This week two studies confirmed that employment based health insurance, or the lack of it, is becoming a political issues. Harris Interactive’s poll of employees shows that American workers continue to view health insurance as a crucial employee benefit. In addition while they perceive other aspects of compensation such as pay to be getting slightly better, they think their health benefits are getting worse. And they’re right. California health insurance commissioner John Garamendi produced a report highlighting the problems with the high cost of health insurance and how it’s forcing employers and individuals out of the market. Garamendi criticized the now popular low cost/high deductible plans as a false solution, and many employees seem to agree.
We have a slowly dying employer-based insurance system, and no apparent ideas on how to replace it. This will have eventual political consequences.