The Top Four Things To Watch For in Healthcare This Year

Focus, determination, and attention to detail are among the entrepreneurial traits you depend on to keep your business on the path to success. It’s no easy task to maintain optimism in the face of today’s economic and political challenges, but your strength and leadership is again in great demand, particularly now, as key deadlines of President Obama’s Affordable Care Act approach. 

But as all true entrepreneurs know, moments of challenge also present opportunity. As 2014 unfolds, four of the leading Obamacare challenges to the survival of your business are on the near horizon. All afford opportunities for you to personally illustrate to your members of Congress the reform law’s numerous pain points that could inflict serious damage on your business. 

  1. First up is the penalty awaiting sole proprietors, aka the “individual mandate,” that kicks in March 31. Those who miss that deadline to buy what the law deems “minimum essential coverage”–which typically contains more health services than necessary–will be assessed a tax.
  2. Then on Tax Day, April 15, many higher-income small-business owners will feel the pain of a 3.8 percent investment tax. Officially deemed the Unearned Income Medicare Contribution Tax, this revenue raiser was added simply as a way to fund the Affordable Care Act.
  3. And sometime this spring, although not publicly announced, the Health and Human Services Department and health insurers are hoping to meet—behind closed doors—to negotiate new, and certainly higher, premium rates for 2015. This will be another great opportunity for you to alert your members of Congress that the voice of small business demands to be heard during this process.
  4. As the year begins to wind down, a fourth and equally important opportunity to share your concerns with lawmakers will come in November and December as even greater numbers of small businesses get hit with health insurance policy cancellations and higher premiums as well. 

Challenges? Yes, but also opportunities to show how Obamacare is impacting real people and real businesses like yours. Join NFIB and, together, we’ll take advantage of all these opportunities to continue to fight for a healthcare system that works for small business and not one that means less choices, dropped coverage and higher premiums.

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About Dan Danner

Donald A. "Dan" Danner was named president and CEO of the National Federation of Independent Business, the nation's leading small business association, in February, 2009. Danner is only the sixth president in the history of the organization. Before rising to the top spot, Danner was executive vice president, overseeing NFIB's federal and state public policy and political activities as well as the organization's three 501 (c) 3 operations: the Research Foundation, Small Business Legal Center and the Young Entrepreneur Foundation. He came to NFIB in 1993 as vice president of the NFIB Education Foundation (now known as the Young Entrepreneur Foundation) and was named vice president of federal public policy in 1995. Previously, he was chief of staff to the U.S. Secretary of Commerce. Danner also worked in the White House Office of Public Liaison, where he was special assistant to the president and deputy director of the department. Before joining the White House staff, Danner was an executive with Armco Inc., a steel manufacturing company. He held leadership positions in sales and marketing, as well as state and federal lobbying on issues such as energy, environment, taxes and trade. He also served four years as vice president of federal relations at George Mason University. A native of Middletown, Ohio, Danner holds an MBA degree from Xavier University and an electrical engineering degree from Purdue University.
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