UPS drops 15000 spouses from health care insurance, Obamacare blamed, Shrinking corporate medical benefits, Costs associated with the Affordable Care Act
“If you like your health care plan, you can keep your health care plan.”…Barack Obama
“However … health insurance rates and benefit coverage plan costs have continued to increase. As a result of those increases, county employees have experienced a pay decrease that has grown larger each year.”…Guilford County Interim Manager Sharisse Fuller
“Can we stop calling ObamaCare the Affordable Care Act now?”…Guilford College student
From Kaiser Health News August 21, 2013.
“Partly blaming the health law, United Parcel Service is set to remove thousands of spouses from its medical plan because they are eligible for coverage elsewhere.
Many analysts downplay the Affordable Care Act’s effect on companies such as UPS, noting that the move is part of a long-term trend of shrinking corporate medical benefits. But the shipping giant repeatedly cites the act to explain the decision, adding fuel to the debate over whether the law erodes traditional employer coverage.
Rising medical costs, “combined with the costs associated with the Affordable Care Act, have made it increasingly difficult to continue providing the same level of health care benefits to our employees at an affordable cost,” UPS said in a memo to employees.
The company told white-collar workers two months ago that 15,000 working spouses eligible for coverage at their own employers would be excluded from the UPS plan in 2014. The Fortune 100 firm expects the move, which applies to non-union U.S. workers only, to save about $60 million a year, said company spokesman Andy McGowan.
UPS becomes one of the highest-profile employers yet to bar working spouses from the company plan. Many firms already require employees to pay a surcharge for working-spouse medical coverage, but some are taking the next step by declining to include them at all, consultants say.”
“To explain the switch, UPS gave workers a memo, obtained by KHN, that repeatedly mentions the health act.
While acknowledging that overall health spending continues to rise, the company also blamed cost increases on the Affordable Care Act’s research fee (initially $1 per health plan member, then rising to $2) and an a temporary fee of $63 per member to stabilize new online marketplaces for consumers buying directly from insurers.”