Obamacare jolts to employer-based insurance

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A White House spokesman has said of President Barack Obama’s health care law that if you already have health insurance through an employer, “there is no change for you except for an increase in benefits that everyone receives as a result of the Affordable Care Act.”

However, there’s ample evidence that employees with work-based health insurance are facing challenges in the era of Obamacare that are impacting the benefits they receive and their paycheck contributions and other costs.

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“The Affordable Care Act changes the playing field like it’s never been changed before,” says Paul Fronstin, a senior research associate at the Employee Benefit Research Institute in Washington, D.C.

Before the law was passed, employers offered health insurance voluntarily because they were concerned about recruitment, retention and their staff’s health and productivity, he adds.

Now, workers are facing possible coverage cuts or health plans potentially stripped down to their bare bones. Here are five ways the Affordable Care Act, aka Obamacare, may shake up employer-sponsored health coverage.