KHN Morning Briefing

Summaries of health policy coverage from major news organizations

Businesses Consider Best Strategies To Cover Part-Time Workers, Spouses

Decisions by Target, Home Depot and Trader Joe's on workers' insurance have implications for the success of the law. 

Politico: In Target’s Wake, Businesses Plot Obamacare Paths 
Target became the latest big company to follow the old drill: drop health coverage for some workers, blame Obamacare and watch Republicans pounce. Home Depot and Trader Joe’s made similar changes to their health plans last year, and UPS limited coverage for spouses. ... While each situation was a little different, the initial conclusion that Obamacare was leaving consumers worse off starts to gets squishy when the details are unpacked. ... since many employers are still figuring out how to respond to the new law, it’s worth discerning lessons from Target’s announcement this week (Nather and Winfield Cunningham, 1/24).

Also in the news -

The Wall Street Journal: H&R Block Tackles Health-Care Opportunity
It is said that the only two certainties in life are death and taxes. A third might be that someone will try to make a buck off the first two. After all, the Grim Reaper doesn't show up absent some illness or injury, while Uncle Sam requires lots of paperwork to assess his take. Both usually involve professional assistance. And the Affordable Care Act means the $2.8 trillion health-care and $19 billion tax-preparation industries just got much more complicated. Having faced uncertainty, health insurers and hospitals looked like winners in the overhaul. But tax preparers such as H&R Block could be surprise beneficiaries of the law's heretofore messy implementation (Jakab, 1/26).

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