As an organization representing the employer community, we have had significant concerns regarding the costs associated with the passage of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA). Our concerns were primarily that the “reform” legislation did little to address the real cost drivers of health care and placed an increased burden of expanded coverage onto the backs of our member businesses and health care organizations.
Regardless of today’s Supreme Court decision, these facts remain to be true: New York continues to be one of the most expensive states, with more than $4 billion annually in taxes on health insurance, seemingly limitless coverage mandates and ever-expanding Medicaid enrollments. These result in higher costs to business and increased pressure on health care providers.
Today’s ruling has far greater implications on government’s expanded ability to tax and regulate than it does to lower the cost of health care. For New York, the next step is to develop a health care exchange by 2014. It is imperative that the private sector participate in the process. If the exchange cannot effectively lower the cost of health care, the shell game will continue. For now, today’s ruling lifted some uncertainty (if only until the November elections). The 2014 provisions of the law will be here before we know it. This gives not much, but some time for businesses to prepare for what’s ahead. Meaning that as always, business will innovate while government regulates.