The ACA helped me insure my employees and my family

Guest blog by Ron Nelsen, owner of Pioneer Overhead Door in Las Vegas and a member of Small Business Majority's Small Business Council

As the owner of Pioneer Overhead Door in Las Vegas, Nevada I wear many hats: I’m the president, the general manager and most of the time I answer the phones. I have a lot of parts to play each day on the job and a lot of responsibility. That’s why I’m grateful for the fact that I haven’t had to worry about purchasing my group health insurance in years.

Thanks to the Affordable Care Act (ACA), I received about $2,200 in tax credits in the first three years after the law’s enactment just for offering group health coverage to my employees. That is money I was able to put back into my business.

But a lower tax bill isn’t the only benefit to my company courtesy of the ACA. Since the law was enacted, the annual premium increases on my plan have been minimal. As a result, cost increases to my employees and my company have been low, and my personnel don’t need to worry about whether or not they can pay for healthcare. That certainty relieves a lot of anxiety.

The peace of mind created by the ACA is a far cry from how things used to be. Before the law, my family and some of my employees wondered if they would be able to get insurance at all because of pre-existing conditions or other issues, while those who could obtain coverage feared they would not be able to afford it thanks to skyrocketing premiums.  

I understand the worries my employees once faced all too well. Prior to the ACA, I had difficulty getting insurance to cover the needs of my own family. For example, when shopping for new insurance I was offered plans that didn’t cover medication or treatment of my wife’s pre-existing condition. There should never be a circumstance in which insurance does not cover one’s healthcare needs.

The ACA also improved my personal health outlook. I have been treated for skin cancer, and I am now confident that I will be covered and that I can renew my policy with no problems as long as the ACA remains in place. Thanks to the ACA, there are far fewer concerns for millions of people like me.

I’ve also seen the ACA spawn entrepreneurship. In just the last few years, I’ve noticed a significant increase in business competition. In talking to some of these new competitors, many told me that the ACA gave them the courage to become entrepreneurs because they felt confident in their ability to obtain quality, affordable health insurance. Thanks to the ACA, healthcare is no longer a barrier for entrepreneurship, nor does the law destroy jobs. In fact, it actually promotes economic growth.

The ACA removes much of the anxiety that comes with running a business, allowing entrepreneurs to do what they do best: create jobs and boost our economy.