A world without PPACA: What would the future hold?Blog added by Paul Wilson on April 24, 2012
Paul Wilson

Paul Wilson

Denver, CO

Joined: May 30, 2007

Many words have been spent and lots of cyberspace filled trying to predict the fate of health care reform. For the sake of argument, let’s say a death sentence is handed out and PPACA goes the way of the dodo. What then?

Experts predict that in the absence of Obamacare, employers and insurance companies will be in charge, according to AP reporter, Ricardo Alonso-Zaldivar.

"Employers had been the major force driving health care change in this country up until the passage of health reform," said Tom Billet, a senior benefits consultant with Towers Watson. "If Obamacare disappears ... we go back to square one. We still have a major problem in this country with very expensive health care."

One likely scenario for the post-PPACA world would be a move towards plans with higher deductibles with tax-free accounts for routine expenses.

Employers would likely shift more financial responsibility to employees, according to Tracy Watts, a senior health care consultant with Mercer.

For example, an average large employer could save approximately $1,800 per employee by moving to a high-deductible policy combined with a health care account, according to a Mercer study.

Meanwhile, private health insurance exchanges where workers would receive payments from employers and have the option to choose between various private exchanges are also likely to gain prominence.

"The concept of an exchange does not belong to Obamacare," said Ken Sperling, managing the project for Aon Hewitt. "We're borrowing a concept that was central to the health care law and bringing it into the private sector. Whether the law survives or not, the concept is still valid."

Stricter financial penalties for smokers, the overweight and those with high cholesterol are also likely, the report said Companies will also face decisions about whether to continue providing coverage for adult children until age 26, one of the law’s most popular benefits.

In other words, some of the law’s key concepts would remain intact, while others would change or disappear altogether. At least that’s what the experts are saying. But how about you? If the Supreme Court strikes down health care reform in June, how do you envision the new landscape?
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