Letter: 'Trading Benefits For Wages"

Heather R. writes:

I heard your report on the idea that money saved from expensive health plans could lead to higher wages. You said that there is lots of economic data to support money moving from wages to health plans, so economists assume the reverse would be true as well. But it sounded like there was no data to support that right now. Presumably that's because health plan costs have not dropped, making it an untested hypothesis.

I (and I suspect others like me) can supply anecdotal evidence of this, though. My husband and I are a two income couple and I have a relatively stable job at a University with good benefits, so we both have health insurance from my job. My husband has repeatedly negotiated with employers for higher wages or more paid vacation based on the fact that he would not be using their health plan. If he can do it, unions can do it. I suspect there's a big untapped data set out there in the form of two income couples like us.

Comments

 

Please keep your community civil. All comments must follow the NPR.org Community rules and terms of use, and will be moderated prior to posting. NPR reserves the right to use the comments we receive, in whole or in part, and to use the commenter's name and location, in any medium. See also the Terms of Use, Privacy Policy and Community FAQ.

NPR thanks our sponsors

Become an NPR sponsor

Support comes from