Physician Collective Bargaining
MEMORANDUM IN OPPOSITION
Unshackle Upstate, a non-partisan, pro-taxpayer, pro-economic growth, education and advocacy coalition made up of business and trade organizations from all parts of Upstate New York, opposes this legislation.
If enacted, this bill would provide for “collective negotiation” by physicians and other health care providers, which would raise the health care costs for all privately insured New Yorkers.
In October 2011, the Federal Trade Commission stated that if enacted, this legislation would “likely lead to increased costs, reduced innovation and decreased access to health care for New York consumers, without countervailing benefits.”
As the cost of health insurance coverage continues to rise, the Legislature should not be advancing legislation of this nature, which will ultimately lead to increased costs for those with private health insurance. A recent study performed by the Health Insurers Association of America found that a similar federal physician collective bargaining proposal would raise premiums by 6% to 11% - which will ultimately be borne by businesses and their employees across New York State.
Perhaps even more alarming is that from 2001-2005 there was a steady decline in employment-based health coverage throughout the state. Specifically in Upstate New York, there was a 2.2% drop in employment based coverage during that time period and a 1.3% drop statewide as a result of rising premiums.
Our organization is extremely concerned that authorizing the collective bargaining of health care providers will lead to sudden increases in premiums, forcing many employers to either increase the costs for employee contributions or eliminate their employee health care coverage completely. These affected employees would then have to choose between either paying for the significant increases in their health care premiums or joining the millions of uninsured New Yorkers.
For these reasons, Unshackle Upstate opposes the enactment of this legislation.
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