Health Care Policies and Small Business

The Small Business and Entrepreneurship Council has a new report ranking states in terms of their health care policy, as it pertains to small business.  Pennsylvania gets a fairly decent ranking, at 8th overall.  The categories include the number of mandates, whether a state has a “pay to play mandate”, guaranteed issue for plans of one, community rating, and tax deductibility for HSA contributions.

While PA has a large number of mandates, driving up its score (a low score is good, like in golf), the fact that the state does not have guaranteed issue, community rating, or a “pay to play” mandate (along with tax deductible HSA contributions) boost the rating.  The bad news is that Governor Rendell has proposed, at various points, an employer mandate, modified community rating, and guaranteed issue, as has President Obama on a national scale.  Adding any of these would hurt Pennsylvania’s competitiveness, and increase the cost of health care for small businesses.

Relatedly, the NCPA has a brief on solutions to lower the cost of health care small businesses, including:

  • Allow Insurance To Be Sold to Associations.
  • Let Businesses Contribute to the Cost of Employee-Owned Insurance.
  • Let Businesses Purchase Health Insurance from Insurers in Other States.

All of these are among our recommendations for health care reform.