On Saturday, September 19th, we had the honor of hosting Senator Jeff Merkley at our shop for a roundtable discussion on the failing state of our current health care system. In attendance were two Oregonians who described to the Senator how the current health care system has abandoned them. One young woman, with a tumor growing at the base of her brain, has no coverage for her needed surgery. She has exhausted the limits of her insurance coverage even before all of the medical tests have been completed. Another woman, whose insurance company dropped the professional association group plan she was covered by, denied her coverage on an individual plan because of a pre-existing condition, high cholesterol. I had the opportunity to explain how the health insurance premiums we pay for our employees and their families have doubled in the last few years to now exceed 18% of payroll. These skyrocketing insurance premium costs are unsustainable for a small business such as ours.
Senator Merkley explained how the health care reform proposal adopted by the Senate HELP Committee that he serves on will end limits to insurance coverage, end denial of coverage for pre-existing conditions, and provide an Exchange and a Public Insurance Plan that will help control costs for small businesses.
Channels 2, 6 and 8, covered the roundtable. You can catch a Channel 6 video clip here: