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**In Case You Missed It** Louisiana Small Business Owners Need Health Care Reform
Date:12/8/2009

afloat. Yet, because I can't afford to provide insurance, it is that much harder for my business to grow and compete.

Like most small business owners, my employees are like family. That is why it was devastating to have a long-time employer leave my company because another, larger, company would help provide insurance. Three years later, she returned with a pay increase, but shortly after was diagnosed with a serious illness and now drives over an hour to see a doctor at a hospital she can barely afford without insurance. Now, with a condition, my employer couldn't get insurance even if she -- and I -- could afford it.

Small business owners like me cannot wait for stable affordable health insurance options. We need our leaders in Washington to pass the right healthcare reform measures to keep small businesses alive and growing.

Mecheall Williams

Bossier City

"Business needs health reform"

The Times Picayune

November 30, 2009

As the owner of an emerging business on a tight budget, I've experienced first-hand how broken our health care system is.

In July 2008, I purchased a policy through Aetna for $302 a month. This past July, at renewal time, Aetna raised my premium to $385 a month. Within a month, almost immediately, they raised it again to $471. It was a 56 percent increase over the last year. The uncertainty forced me to cancel my healthcare coverage.

Although currently I have a very small business, I see real potential for growth. Soon, I look forward to hiring additional help and retaining employees by offering quality and affordable healthcare coverage.
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SOURCE U.S. Senate Committee on Small Business & Entrepreneurship
Copyright©2009 PR Newswire.
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