This letter has been sent to Senators Scott, Shaheen, and Bennet, in support of S. 1099, the "Protecting Affordable Coverage for Employees Act."
In many ways, U.S. health care is the envy of the world--it has helped many individuals live longer than ever and enjoy a better quality of life than previously possible. However, we continue to face the challenge of making quality health care more affordable, more accessible, and more reliable for all Americans.
The Chamber is focused on promoting effective private sector solutions to our health care challenges that will help control costs, expand access, and improve the quality of care.
Check out the Chamber's Health Care Solutions Council report for innovative ideas from the business community.
Our country's health care system has many strengths: tremendous medical innovation, cutting edge technology and drugs, and world-leading medical institutions. Nevertheless, there are huge variations in quality, cost, and access to care within our system. American patients are increasingly suffering from costly and often deadly chronic diseases that are many times preventable. And even though the United States pays more for health care than any other nation, we aren't getting our money's worth when you consider health outcomes and efficiency of care.
Over five years after the enactment of the Affordable Care Act (ACA), further reforms are needed to achieve lower costs, innovative and high-quality care, and better health for all Americans.
Through its Health Care Solutions Council, the Chamber is working to achieve greater value in health care, measured by more affordable coverage options and improved access to higher-quality and prevention-oriented care. Many of these solutions are being pioneered in the private sector, as America's employers implement innovative reforms in health care and wellness. By prioritizing efforts to improve the employer-sponsored health care system--which covers millions of Americans--we will use these solutions to drive system-wide changes that can lead to better population health and sustainable health care costs.
The Chamber's health care priorities include:
- Advancing successful ideas from the private sector that reduce costs, advance quality, and improve health
- Promoting reforms that provide relief to employers and employees as the ACA is implemented including:
- Reducing the harm of the employer mandate by restoring the 40-hour work week;
- Repealing taxes that increase premiums and cost jobs such as the 40% excise tax, medical device tax, and the health insurance tax; and
- Improving flexibility for tax-preferred accounts that encourage careful health care spending like FSAs, HSAs, and HRAs
- Raising awareness of the positive effects of wellness and chronic disease management programs in the workplace to improve health and productivity
- Expanding access to coverage and services by strengthening the employer-sponsored system
- Tell Congress to restore the 40-hour work week. The 30-hour definition under Obamacare forces employers to restructure their workforce and hurts employees through lost wages and hours. Learn more from the More Time for Full Time Coalition.
- Prepare your small business for the employer mandate and other major provisions of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA) with these educational resources including a penalty calculator, a coverage or penalty chart, and more.
- Organize a wellness program for your workplace with the Chamber's Workplace Wellness Toolkit. Nearly 169 million Americans health insurance through their employer. As the largest purchaser of health care, employers of all sizes are uniquely situated to provide leadership in finding solutions and exerting transformative change.
- Subscribe to the Health Care RSS feed to receive the latest health care insight and analysis from the U.S. Chamber blog.
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This coalition letter in support of S. 1099, the "Protecting Affordable Coverage for Employees Act," was sent to Senators Scott, Shaheen, and Bennet.
In these comments, submitted to the Department of the Treasury and the Internal Revenue Service, the Chamber outlines its concerns about the excise tax and urges regulators to strongly consider and evaluate the inconsistencies in terminology within this provision, as well as the inconsistencies in overall Affordable Care Act (ACA) policy that may result without additional flexibility and safe-harbors.
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