When I decided to write on Health Care Reform I went to the web to find out how Wikipedia defined “reform”. I laughed when I read that the only difference between reform and revolution is that reform is a fine tuning while revolution is a radical change. Granted they both are used to right a wrong but I am not sure if what has been enacted should be considered a fine tuning.
I want to be clear in that my opinion is biased and my life, liberty and pursuit of happiness are financed by the healthcare system. Specifically, my company, McQuade Consulting, generates revenue from either consulting with companies or through commissions earned on insurance premiums. When it became evident that healthcare reform was here to stay, we (my business partner Peter Chesner and I) decided that getting certified in HealthCare Reform would be a good idea. Prior to the election (yes prior) we traveled to Florida to meet Sandy (the hurricane) and listen to the nation’s most knowledgeable advisors, experts, educators, and politicians.
We came back to Maryland, energized at the possibilities of reform. What was clear to us was that if you were not ahead of the curve you were going to be whipped by it. We have created the models to efficiently guide our clients and look forward to the evolution. Unfortunately, there are still gaps that have not been bridged and questions that have not been answered.
The goal of Healthcare Reform was to provide access, affordability, and quality. I could argue that all three elements are subject to individual interpretations. For this piece let’s only discuss affordability as the access and quality elements mostly affect individuals and not corporations or organizations.
If you are an employer and have 49 employees or less, you are exempt from the law on a Federal level but the State of Maryland has yet to disclose what is up its sleeve. If you are a large employer of unskilled workers you are either going to pay more for your portion of the premiums or pay more taxes. And if you are thinking about just paying the penalties imposed for not offering healthcare to your team, you may make a big mistake. Congress has the ability to change the penalties associated with not having a plan or not contributing enough to the plan at any time. You see Washington learned how to create loopholes for themselves which to the taxpayer may look more like a noose!
With change comes opportunity for some and demise for others and we see this as an opportunity. Providing millions of Americans with access to quality care is essential. The main question is will it be “Affordable” to both the individual and the corporation
Revolution or reform…Only time will tell.