The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA) includes several short- and long-term provisions designed to help small businesses pay for and maintain health insurance for their workers, and to allow workers without employer coverage to gain access to affordable, comprehensive health insurance. Provisions include a small business tax credit to offset premium costs for firms that offer coverage starting this taxable year, establishment of state-based insurance exchanges that promise to lower administrative costs and pool risk more broadly, and creation of new market rules and an essential benefit standard to protect small firms and their workers. Analysis shows that up to 16.6 million workers are in firms that would be eligible for the tax credit in 2010 to 2013. Over the next 10 years, small businesses and organizations could receive an estimated $40 billion in federal support through the premium credit program.
Realizing Health Reform's Potential: Small Businesses and the Affordable Care Act of 2010
S. R. Collins, K. Davis, J. L. Nicholson, and K. Stremikis, Realizing Health Reform’s Potential: Small Businesses and the Affordable Care Act of 2010, The Commonwealth Fund, September 2010.