Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Northampton County's Health Care Costs Rise 25% in One Year

Budget Administrator Doran Hammon has just told Northampton County Council's Finance Committee that there's been a 25% increase in health care costs for County employees this year, That's $3.3 million.

"That's exactly why we need less employees," remarked Council President Ron Angle.

16 comments:

Anonymous said...

Amazing, since most non-profits ahve experienced a 6-8% increase. Maybe we need to evaluate County managers for such a poor performance.

Anonymous said...

OKAY.... SURE.... is it due to obamacare ?

Anonymous said...

he's really something else, his answer to everything is to just get rid of it ... i'm so sorry i voted for him ... i'm hearing all sorts of things ... is he really this vindictive ?

Anonymous said...

It is time to cut all local governments in half. And yes... that means LESS SERVICE TO BE PROVIDED!!! The majority of services that are provided are BS social services. The FDR experiment is about over. We can not afford this anymore. PERIOD. When does it stop? When we become France and Greece with riots? Oh, and I mean riots by the Middle Working Taxpaying Class!!! Not those that want hand outs. I agree with Angle, lets shut it down now.

Anonymous said...

I can just see you rioting, better ask yo momma if you can go to this riot you speak of, LOL

Anonymous said...

And Angle will forfeit his healthcare?

Bernie O'Hare said...

Angle's health care is not paid for by the County. County Councl members do not participate in the haelth plan. Nice try.

Anonymous said...

I would really like this increase explained. Seems excessive in light of no COLA for social security (yet medicare increased also). Perhaps county employees should have to contribute to their plans as do most private employees.

Anonymous said...

County employees do contribute to their helthcare. That contribtion will increase 1.8% in December.

Anonymous said...

Increase 1.8% from what?

Bernie O'Hare said...

Every contract beng negotiated is requiring a greater contribution. Part of the reason for this spike is that this year, many employees elected to have elective surgery and other matters done. This could just be one of those things or it might be a concern bred by changes under Obamacare.

Anonymous said...

Really Bernie! Some how the fear of Obamacare has only resulted in single digit increase elsewhere.

Nice try though. This is more of the Stoffa Administration mis-management at work. I wonder who gets a piece of this action.

Good of you to keep making excuses for inexcusable management. You can blame the unions but every contract currently in place is a Stoffa contract.

Anonymous said...

Elected to have elective surgery?
You know the types of these surgeries? And the frequency?
Sounds drastic, do they have golden plans that pay to get their ugly union goon faces plasticized?

monkey momma said...

25% is a huge increase, but the truth is, everyone paying for health care coverage is paying for an increase. EVERYONE. So, this is not likely to be mismanagement by the county - it's just another example of the health care crisis in this country.

Angle is exactly right on this one - it is another reason to get rid of heads in the county offices. I see nothing vindictive about it - it's just straight-up common sense. Many private employers are making the same decision EVERY DAY.

Donna Baver Rovito said...

Part 1

Insurance companies are all reacting to increased federal mandates included in the so-called "Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act" (PPACA) by raising their rates, as there's nothing in the federal health care bill which many call "Obamacare" to prevent that. (Despite the fact that the bill was promised to "bend the cost curve down.")

The "side effects" of the PPACA are becoming more evident daily, and prove that the 2,700 page bill, which will likely involve over 50,000 pages of regulations which are being written right now by the unelected Czarina of Health for former lobbyist for personal injury lawyers Kathleen Sibelius, and her sidekick, an unconfirmed doctor who admits to being "romantic" about England's disastrous National Health Service, which decides on what services patients can receive based upon their age and value to society...

Already we've seen 111 waivers granted to Obama administration supporters who can't meet the mandate to provide a minumum level of care to their employees - oh, and most of these are unions which lobbied for the PPACA to pass. Insurers have decided to drop child-only policies because they can't refuse to pay for care for children who are already sick (which sounds "mean," but is fiscally unsustainable), seniors will lose their government-subsidized Medicare Advantage plans which offer better coverage and more benefits than regular Medicare, people with health savings accounts won't be able to use them to buy over-the counter medications like tylenol and ibuprofen any longer and the amount people can put in their HSA's will be limited and eventually phased out entirely, etc., etc., etc.

It seems like there's a new report of an "unintended consequence" of the PPACA every day - and the vast majority of provisions don't even kick in until 2014. Just wait until the Queen of Health Care writes the regulations about what ALL insurance companies in the nation will be mandated to cover - in vitro fertilization for illegal aliens, perhaps?

Donna Baver Rovito said...

Part 2

Government mandates are the sole reason for the huge differences in health insurance premiums from state to state - and when every insurance company has to provide funding for EVERYTHING, premiums will reflect that. The PPACA requires "free" preventive care for which there are simply not enough doctors to provide, should everyone take advantage of the newly mandated benefits, and there's little provision in the bill to increase the number of medical students, and NO provision to increase the number of residency slots funded by Medicare - and without a 3 to 10 year residency to actually teach doctors how to BE doctors, an MD or DO degree from a medical school isn't worth the $200,000 in tuition, not to mention the thousands of hours of study to obtain it. Don't worry, though, there are LOTS of provisions to increase the number of advanced practice nurses in the nation (funny how the nurses' unions all supported the bill, isn't it?)

(Oh, and as a quick sidebar, DOCTORS are overwhelmingly against the bill, despite the highly public support of the AMA, which represents only about 10% of the practicing doctors in the country. Several state medical societies have threatened to break from the AMA over it.)

So why are premiums rising so much NOW? Well, if you owned a business and knew your expenses were guaranteed to rise 100 or 200 or 300% over the next 10 years, wouldn't you start to gradually raises your prices in anticipation, ESPECIALLY if you feared that at some point, the government might pass a law that says they can tell you what your rates will be? (And that's coming....well, maybe before Nov. 2 that was coming.)

The PPACA wants everyone's health care to be "equal." And in this case, "equal" means equally expensive and equally mediocre.

If anyone is interested in learning more about the health care bill and what's being done to fight it's implementation, please join the local tea party group (www.lehighvalleyteaparty.org) and click on my name to get involved with the Health Care Action Committee, which is currently in the midst of a deep analysis of the provisions of the bill and planning a major public event early in 2011 to lay out those provisions for the public. (We're looking for a venue that can hold 1,000 people or so if someone has a suggestion!)