ObamaCare’s impact on Walmart seem to have brought a new business opportunity, and a sad day for employees. Walmart cut back benefits for part-time workers in an effort to cut healthcare costs before the looming 2015 mandate to insure full-time workers.
The end result of Walmarts reaction to ObamaCare for the employees won’t be too bad, as employees can now get free or low cost health insurance through Medicaid or marketplace subsidies thanks to the ACA (paid for by taxpayers). However folks in states that did not expand Medicaid may find that they lose their benefits, yet fall in the dreaded Medicaid-gap (the income level that results in not making enough for marketplace subsidies and not qualifying for Medicaid).
On another healthcare note Walmart is also opening health insurance help centers in 2,700 stores to help people sign up for Medicare and health insurance marketplaces.
At least the 5% of the part-time workforce that are losing their coverage will have a short walk over to the help center to replace their coverage.
This should go over well at the upcoming meeting with shareholders and investors, but it may not sit as well with others. How do we balance the morality and humanity of having a safety-net, with the idea that large employers like Walmart use safety-net subsidies to push their responsibilities onto we the people?