30 million Americans will lose their health coverage if Donald Trump & GOP Leadership repeal health care.
Add your name to the growing list of small business owners standing up and telling Congress to keep their hands off our health care.
We, the undersigned business owners, urge you to protect the Affordable Care Act (ACA) and reject any plan to dismantle the current health care system.
The Affordable Care Act is working for small business owners
Before the ACA, small business owners like us paid an average of 18% more for health coverage and received fewer comprehensive benefits than our larger competitors. Unlike larger companies, we could not capitalize on economies of scale, and use our leverage to negotiate fair prices. Worse yet, one employee’s expensive illness could cause the premiums for the whole firm to spike in subsequent years.
The ACA has enacted critical market reforms to address these challenges: insurance companies can no longer charge small firms higher premiums based on their business sector, an employee’s health status, age, or gender. There are basic of services (Essential Health Benefits) that all plans must provide, ensuring a minimum standard of coverage. And small business owners can now participate in a larger risk pool, which stabilizes premium rates and prevents dramatic cost increases based on a given employee.
Furthermore, because of the ACA marketplaces, entrepreneurs now have access to portable health insurance, making it possible to stay insured and create new businesses. One in five marketplace enrollees is a small business owner or is self-employed. Among small business owners, those of us with annual incomes below $65,000 are the most likely to rely on the Marketplace for health insurance.
While our current health care system is not perfect, repealing the ACA would hurt small businesses
The Republican plan would take away insurance from more than 30 million people, including over 4 million newly insured small business owners and our employees. The removal of the individual mandate and the loss of subsidies would push healthier people out of the market and lead to the “death spiral” of spiked premiums, fewer healthy participants, and a mass exodus of insurance companies from the market. The collapse of the private market would mean 7.3 million people would lose coverage, leaving small business owners responsible for an expanding uninsured workforce.
We would also experience higher premiums, as more uninsured people get uncompensated care and insurance companies pass along the costs to insured business owners. The result: untreated or sicker employees, more work absences, higher health costs, and lower productivity for small business owners.
Dismantling our health care system would cause economic instability and significant job loss.
Both the Republican leadership and President-elect Trump have been clear about their plans to further overhaul the health care system through cuts to Medicaid and Medicare. Dismantling these programs would syphon billions of dollars out of local economies, starve state funding, and under-resource vital programs that small businesses rely on.
The economic ripple effects would be far-reaching. Nearly 3 million jobs would be lost, and gross state products would fall by $1.5 trillion between 2019 and 2023, business output would drop $2.6 trillion. And, as evidence from the Great Recession demonstrates, the ensuing contracting economy would disproportionately harm small business growth.
As small business owners across the US, we experience these effects first-hand. We urge you not to play politics with our livelihood. We call on you to protect our businesses, communities, and economies, and reject any plan to repeal the Affordable Care Act and dismantle our current health care system.