Congressman Paul Tonko announced today a new nonpartisan study has concluded the Affordable Care Act will encourage approximately 1.5 million Americans to choose to start their own businesses over the next few years. Independent health care experts from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and the Urban Institute found that this new generation of entrepreneurs will work to open their own small businesses to take advantage of the key provisions of the health care law, which will be implemented beginning in 2014.
"The Capital Region is known for research and innovation, and building on these strengths is one of the best ways to grow our economy and put New Yorkers back to work in good-paying jobs," said Congressman Tonko. "By helping middle-class working families with modest incomes cover the cost of their premiums, the health care law will create new options for a new generation of innovative small business owners."
The study, "The Affordable Care Act: Improving Incentives for Entrepreneurship and Self-Employment," is based on empirical research demonstrating a significant increase in self-employment in states that have already initiated some health reforms.
"In years past, many Americans have been discouraged from going out on their own and becoming their own boss out of a fear they could be denied coverage for pre-existing conditions, losing access to their preferred doctor, or being unable to afford premiums without their employer sharing the cost. Because of the Affordable Care Act, access to high-quality and affordable coverage will no longer be exclusively tied to employment," added Tonko.
The hesitation felt by many Americans to leave their jobs because of their health insurance concerns is commonly referred to as "job lock". The growth of entrepreneurship stimulated by the Affordable Care Act will lead to a more dynamic economy, with greater innovation and a stronger rate of economic growth.