Got questions about the Affordable Care Act? In a regular feature, the WHYY/NewsWorks Health and Science Desk is providing "The Short Answer."
If I get my health insurance through work, will anything change in 2014?
The short answer
No — not for now, at least.
The jury is still out as to how health care reform will affect employer-based health insurance.
First, some context: About half of all Americans [PDF] get their insurance through work, according to the U.S. Census Bureau. With the introduction of new rules under the Affordable Care Act, the employer-based market is changing.
Some economists say more employers are likely to stop offering health insurance — especially in lower-skilled industries. Others point to Massachusetts, where employer-based health coverage actually increased slightly after the implementation of similar health care reforms.
The federal law does not require employers to provide health insurance. However, it does impose penalties on employers with more than 50 employees who fail to help those workers get affordable plans. This Kaiser Family Foundation chart explains the nuances all nicely.
There are some estimates on how many people will be dropped from employer-based plans. A recent report from the non-partisan Congressional Budget Office estimated that about 7 million people by 2022 will either be dropped from or opt out of employer-sponsored health plans.