- No employer contributions (unless you want to thank yourself for paying it all)
- No group discounts for supplemental products (like dental, vision, life and disability insurance)
- No premium discounts for wellness program participation
No – No – No.
Makes you feel like a chastised child.
We did not even catch a break on health reform’s individual mandate. The Affordable Care Act provision requires all eligible individuals to purchase health insurance or face a tax penalty.
The one delayed for the big boy employers.
Self-employed Health Insurance Market
Part of the problem may be the debate over how many of us there are.
Bloomberg Businessweek cited varying estimates.
- Freelancers Union estimates 42 million
- Lobbying group, It’s My Business estimates there are over 10 million
- Consultant MBO Partners estimated nearly 18 million
- A 2010 Intuit survey estimated 40 percent of the workforce would be contingent workers by 2020
I guess you can pick your own estimate.
Managing Health and Money
I am sure there are those who think the federal premium subsidies is reward enough.
Qualifying individuals who purchase coverage through the health insurance marketplace may apply for credits toward premiums.
- Not all self-employed individuals qualify
- They make too much money
Most employers recognize the need for healthier behaviors in their workforce to help stem the flow of hemorrhaging health care costs.
Changing behavior starts with the individual – whether that individual is an employee or self-employed. So, why shouldn’t the self-employed have incentives for healthy behaviors?
If you had an incentive to save health care dollars, would you take it? The following are common employer-sponsored incentives.
- Participation in a wellness program
- Signing up for weight or disease management programs
- Performing other program actions – such as health risk assessments or health screenings
The rewards may be a credit toward premiums, lower deductibles or reduced out-of-pocket expenses.
You do something to gain something.
I could do that.
Sure, health reform’s Affordable Care Act covers certain preventive services in full.
- Imagine a financial incentive for receiving preventive care
- Combine that with other action-based incentives to reduce premiums
Health Insurance Marketplace
The pipe dream of the health insurance marketplace was an Amazon-type experience.
Amazon sellers understand the lure of a good incentive.
- Competitive prices
- Free shipping
- Unique products
- Customer loyalty discounts
“…Your customer is the user, not the store.”
A Seller’s Guide To Amazon: Brand Secrets From Hint Water’s Techie CEO, Forbes
And that user is the individual. With the right incentive, could lower health care costs really happen?
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Notice of Disclaimer –Cathy Miller is not an attorney or health care provider and cannot provide legal or health care advice. The information provided is for your general background only, and is not intended to constitute legal or health care advice as to your specific circumstances. We recommend you review legislation with legal counsel and visit your physician for health care issues.