That would be only one part of the problem, the problem is much more complex than that. Many employers don't even offer their employees health insurance in any form. Most small employers, those having fewer then 20 employees, do not. Many employers who DO offer it offer plans that are inadequate to cover many medical problems or they may have exorbitantly high deductibles or co-pays. Most employers do not offer health insurance to workers who are part time employees, and as a consequence tend to keep their employees at less than 40 hours a week in order to be able to not offer them the same benefits as a full time employer. Our Nation's single largest employer in the private sector is Wal*Mart which employs over 1.5 million people. Eighty percent of Wal*Marts employees are part time workers. Wal*Mart does off a health insurance plan to all of its employees however that policy is one of those that is notoriously lacking in ability to meet the needs of the health care of those people who have the plan. The limits are very low, and the co-pays are extremely high. In fact, Wal*Mart has been notorious in teaching its employees to use the Medical Assistance programs of the States, in effect, passing along its health care responsibilities onto the taxpayer system (along with advising its employees to apply for food stamps and other government assistance plans for the poor. Wal*Mart pays its workers on average, about $8/hour, which is a less than livable wage just about everywhere in the U.S. This makes it difficult or impossible for employees who have health problems to meet the co-pays and the low insurance limits. NOw I chose Wal*Mart as an example, however it is NOT the ONLY large employer who subscribes to such practices. Target, K-Mart and many other large retail employers follow similar practices. Also, there are many non-retail employers who make use of such practices. Add to this the vast number of self-employed workers who are unable to afford the high cost of health insurance because they do not have the numbers to affect a savings based on volume of numbers of policy holders.
There are about 50 million people in the U.S. who are uninsured. Of this number, about 80% of them are hardworking people who simply do not have the option of health insurance OR cannot afford what IS available. The Right has made an issue of all of the "Poor people" who are leeching off of the system, yet as we can see it is composed MOSTLY of hardworking folks who simply do not have the option of Health Care Insurance at their disposal. That translate to over 40 million people who work hard every day and yet do NOT have affordable or available Health care insurance. And this post has ONLY scratched the surface of the complexity of the health care issue in the U.S.
Raji the Green Witch