San Francisco was the first city in the country to offer its residents employer-provided universal healthcare coverage. And although it experienced some bumps along the way, more than 47,000 people currently received treatment at 37 locations.
Funding the program falls to employers, who can opt to either provide their own private insurance provider or pay into the citywide program. For restaurants, many pass along the cost of their contributions through surcharges added onto patrons bills. But a grand jury report found that many businesses were actually adding to their own bottom lines by turning a profit on the surcharges. Additionally, it was found that some businesses were underfunding their plans and re-pocketing unused funds.
In 2011, Mayor Ed Lee signed a new piece of legislation that would improve deliverable health care. Among the changes instituted by the legislation was the creation of an accrual healthcare account, whereby an employee can accrue up to two years worth of funds, and making the healthcare account balances available for up to 90 days after an employee leaves a workplace.
Those new reforms to the plan could alter the dynamic not only of how employees benefit, but how employers participate. That’s why some restaurateurs are saying that further reforms are unnecessary right now. It will take time to develop new data detailing how the program is functioning.
Read the full article at the San Francisco Chronicle.