The staggering costs of Obamacare

Now that President Obama has completed his end-zone dance for perhaps signing up more people for health insurance than have been dropped from coverage due to Obamacare, it’s time for a sober look at the costs of his signature program. Our friend Tevi Troy, head of the American Health Policy Institute (AHPI), provides that look in a study called “The Cost of the Affordable Care Act to Large Employers.”

The study is based on internal cost data from more than 100 large employers (10,000 or more employees each) doing business in the United States. It offers the first-ever look at how these organizations believe Obamacare has impacted the current and future cost of providing health care to their employees.

The study’s main findings are that over the next decade:

Obamacare will cost large U.S. employers between $4,800 to $5,900 per employee.

Large employers expect overall Obamacare-related cost increases of between $163 million and $200 million per employer, or an increase of 4.3 percent in 2016 and 8.4 percent in 2023 over and above what they would otherwise be spending.

Based on these data, the total cost of Obamacare to all large U.S. employers will amount to between $151 billion and $186 billion, or 5.9 percent more than what they would otherwise be spending.

Tevi concludes that “these data demonstrate that the added mandates, fees and regulatory burdens associated with the ACA are increasing the cost of employer-sponsored health care plans, with implications for both employers and employees.” I’ll say.

Staffing decisions will, of course, be among the “implications.” If the estimates contained in the AHPI study are even close to accurate, Obamacare will likely prove to be a significant job-killer.

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