If I didn’t have side income from blogging I’d be pretty pissed each year when we get our new benefits options for the next year. I guess it’s downgraded to just being annoyed and not “pissed”. I understand that healthcare costs continue to exceed the rate of inflation. So, inflation’s 3%, healthcare rises 6%. That’s not sustainable forever, but that’s the current rate of increase nationally. But 43% year over year increase? WTF! Clearly, our firm either continues to work with the wrong healthcare providers or we have some really bad negotiators each year acting on behalf of our employees….OR the company just wants to continue to cut costs. 43% is the increase for the same healthcare option we were in last year. I’m comparing apples to apples. 43%…
I’m not here to complain about my company, I get why they’re doing it. Because they can. Biotech, biopharma, old pharma, hospitals, health insurers – they’re all the target of government cost-cutting in the coming years. Instead of actually agreeing to cut back on the services the government keeps promising people to buy votes, they will instead continue to clamp down on the pricing of goods and services they secure from the private sector. While the long-term effect of this is simply a redistribution of wealth from private to public, it’s the government model and it’s accelerating. So, companies in healthcare are looking ahead and see dark clouds forming. They know what’s coming and they’re preparing for it by cutting costs. It’s just kind of annoying that this is the new reality.
The good ole’ days are over. In a new world of 2% raises, 3% inflation and double-digit healthcare premium increases each year, my true salary will decline forever. We’re all more likely to be a temp than full-time in the years ahead (with no company-sponsored healthcare). Companies know this, so they don’t really worry too much how far they push you – they know you’re not gonna leave! I could always follow the headhunter leads and jump jobs for 20% here and 30% there to keep up, but that’s not a game I’m interested in playing. I actually tend to like my job and the people I work with which is more than most people I know can say. And I don’t want to move my kids around the country every few years chasing the almighty dollar. I’ve accepted reality and I’m doing something about it by building additional streams of income (real estate and small biz aside from blogging).
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How Bad is Your HealthCare Premium Increase for 2012?