Health insurance is expensive. No bones about it. As a full-time employee I know that all too well as the premiums continue to increase every single year. But one thing a lot of people don’t think about is the hardship it places on businesses themselves.
I ran my own company a few years ago. It was a social shopping site that my business partner (Hey, Jeff!) and I spent years prepping before finally launching. When we were ready to go full steam ahead and really commit to the company, we found a small office and hired a small on-site staff of roughly five employees.
Sure, we had a number of freelancers and consultants as well, but all totaled, we probably hit about 20 employees if you count all of them. Full-time, salaried employees, however? Yeah, just about five. You can’t get much smaller than that with a small business.
Now, we looked into health insurance and man was it way too expensive. We were completely upfront with all employees that we couldn’t afford health insurance, and thankfully everyone was fine with that as they had it through other means.
I don’t mean (or want) to get political here so I won’t. I’m just talking facts now. But with the Affordable Care Act (a.k.a. Obamacare), things have gotten easier for many people to get insurance. However, it’s also made things oodles more complicated and confusing for business owners to figure it all out.
If you run a small business in New York City, though, there’s light at the end of the tunnel. And no, I don’t mean the Lincoln Tunnel.
EmblemHealth has started an initiative to help educate small business owners about the individual marketplace exchange which small business owners can point their employees towards. But more than that, EmblemHealth wants to educate you owners about another tool created from the ACA. The Small Business Health Options Program (SHOP) was created specifically for small businesses to offer employer tax credits.
You can learn all about SHOP and what it offers by visiting EmblemHealth’s Health Care Reform Hub. Easy to navigate and chock full of information and explanations, the Hub is a fabulous resource for getting a handle on the all-too-confusing world of Health Care Reform.
There’s even a Tax Credit Calculator to make it easier for you to compare rates, calculate various costs and even determine if your organization can qualify for specific tax credits by purchasing employee health care coverage.
None of this was available when I was running my own small business. And granted, we only had five employees, but if the company had taken off and grown a bit, we easily could’ve hit 20 or 30 employees within another year or two. At that point, we seriously would’ve had to do something about health care coverage. And with the mass confusion caused by the ACA, I know my head would still be spinning.
If you run a small business in the NYC area, do yourself (and your company!) a favor and check out EmblemHealth’s Health Care Reform Hub. The worst that happens is you end up with happier, healthier employees, along with some nice tax credits to help your bottom line.
This is a sponsored blog; while the views expressed here are my own, I have received compensation from EmblemHealth to review information.