CBO: Millions Will Lose Employer Coverage Due to Obamacare Premium Spikes
The slow-motion implosion of Obamacare continues with the newest report from the Congressional Budget Office foreseeing up to 9 million Americans losing their employer-based insurance coverage over the next decade because of spiking premiums.
Obamacare insurance premiums will leap 6 percent a year over the next decade, and companies will drop millions of employees from their health plans as insurers and employers calibrate their offerings for the new marketplace, the Congressional Budget Office said Thursday.
The health law will continue to steadily grow in both cost and coverage, working toward President Obama’s goal of expanding those with access to insurance — but the government will shell out tens of billions of dollars to pay for it, analysts said in their latest evaluation of the federal budget and the Affordable Care Act, which is driving much of the change.
Medicaid, the federal-state health program for the poor, is growing particularly fast, with some 13 million people signed up for the program this year because of Obamacare. That’s up 3 million from 2015, and it will grow to 19 million by 2026, the CBO said.
Some of those millions will be the working poor, who could get coverage through their jobs but choose Medicaid instead. But millions of others will be thrown out of their plans by businesses who decide it’s cheaper to pay the government penalty than to offer coverage to all of their employers.
“Over the next few years, more employers are expected to respond to the availability of coverage through the marketplaces by declining to offer insurance to their employees,” the CBO said. “As employers change their insurance offerings, some of their employers are expected to enroll in coverage through the marketplaces.”
Between the pull of Medicaid and the push of employers dumping plans, some 9 million fewer people will be getting coverage through their jobs than would have been the case without Obamacare, analysts said.
The expanded number of people on Medicaid, and the growing number of people buying insurance on the Obamacare health exchanges with the aid of taxpayer subsidies, will push up the cost of coverage some $136 billion over last year’s projection.