A reader recently posted an angry comment about one of my articles about survey data put out by the International Foundation of Employee Benefit Plans (IFEBP).
I wrote about how the kinds of big and midsize employers that tend to participate in IFEBP surveys said the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA) is already affecting their health plan costs and benefits strategies.
A reader begged for me to do a better job of covering the effects of a bizarre PPACA phenomenon — the fact that the federal government is now encouraging employers to hate older workers, by pushing employer plans to charge more for coverage for older workers, and less for coverage for younger workers.
The reader also begged for more coverage of how the PPACA metal-level system has made some useful, popular plan designs disappear.
The health insurance world is big, and I’m small. I have to run around like a hamster in a hamster wheel to keep up with all of the seemingly huge news hitting me on my head. It’s hard for me to find the time to conduct great, in-depth surveys, or the time or the expertise to do analyses of giant spreadsheets full of Big Data. I depend heavily on universities, government agencies, consulting firms and stand-alone research centers (“think tanks”) to send me survey reports, and to understand Big Data well enough to analyze it for me, or to put it into Little Spreadsheets with headers I understand.
What’s striking about PPACA World is that it’s still hard to get anything that even looks like data about how PPACA is actually working.
Opponents tend to send me analyses about how terrible PPACA is.
Supporters still send predictions about what PPACA will do, or about what PPACA provisions, plans and plan issuers have promised to do.