The Times, Trenton

The Real Cure For Small-Business Health

The Times of Trenton — Thursday, February 5, 2009

Letters to the Editor

Anita Shaffer's article about small businesses and health care, "Seeking A Cure To Small Biz Health-Care" (Jan. 25), points out that oversight of the small-group insurance market hasn't gone far enough to fix the problem for small businesses. I can attest to that fact. I own New Jersey Medical Supplies. My business has five employees, and we're struggling with health care. Just this past week, I received a notice saying that our carrier is increasing our premiums by 20 percent.

So, how do we fix health-care coverage for small businesses? As a business owner, I think that as long as we're held captive by the insurance industry, things won't change. Since our small size doesn't give us bargaining power on our own, the only way small businesses can gain leverage with the insurance companies is by signaling that we'll go elsewhere in large numbers.

But right now, there's nowhere else to go. That's why I believe we need a new choice — a public health insurance plan — so we won't be held hostage to the whims of the insurance industry any longer. That's the only way we're going to break the current pattern and give small businesses a fighting chance in health care.

— GEORGE YOST, Mount Laurel

The writer is a member of New Jersey Main Street Alliance.

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