Thursday, January 31, 2013

The Cost of Healthcare

I'm as guilty of it as anybody. I have no real concept what my healthcare costs.  But thanks to Obamacare I am finding out. In the law is a provision that requires employers to disclose the cost of healthcare for each employee.  In case you haven't found it yet, here's how to find it:
The new information appears in Box 12 of the standard W-2 form, with a two-letter code, DD. The box shows the “cost of employer-sponsored health coverage.” And that amount is not taxable, the Internal Revenue Service says on the back of the form.
To my mind this is a really good thing. Employees should have a sense of what that benefit costs. As the article describes many reactions are shock at how much is actually paid out. Another reaction that may be hoped for is anger at the unrelenting upward trajectory of that amount year to year. There is no debating that the cost of health care is a huge issue in the U.S., but at the same time most people have very little concept of what that cost is in a real sense.

And as much as I think it's good to have more information, as Alexander Pope said, "A little learning is a dangerous thing."

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