Healthcare reform discussed at Cobb County summit - DC News FOX 5 DC WTTG

Healthcare reform discussed at Cobb County summit

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David Bottoms, the senior vice-president of the Bottoms Group, spoke at a health care summit on Monday. David Bottoms, the senior vice-president of the Bottoms Group, spoke at a health care summit on Monday.
COBB COUNTY, Ga. -

Hundreds of Cobb County business leaders turned out to a health care summit on Monday to learn more about the Affordable Care Act and what it means for their businesses.

The Cobb County Chamber of Commerce held the event at the Cobb Galleria Centre. The session included experts in the medical, insurance and pharmaceutical industries.

David Bottoms, the senior vice-president of the Bottoms Group, a Marietta-based insurance brokerage firm, said his company has been getting a lot of questions.

"The biggest question that I get is, ‘What do we need to be doing to be compliant,'" said Bottoms, "And for most small businesses, it's providing notices and frankly helping employees understand their options."

Northwest Exterminating human resources director Susan Pearson has explained the new options to her employees since last year. While she says her company is committed to providing health insurance to its workers, it's concerned about rising costs.

"We've seen large increases in our premium rates over the last couple of years and I don't expect that that will stop. Although, I do hope that it will slow down," Pearson said.

But it doesn't help matters that the government's insurance exchanges website struggles to handle online traffic. Bottoms said that solving that problem is critical to his industry.

"Frankly, until the government system starts working on a reliable basis, that's really limiting our ability to roll out the private exchange solutions," Bottoms said.

Pearson said Northwest Exterminating's 350 employees seem to be happy with the insurance they already have and aren't inquiring about Obamacare.

"Got a few questions after we sent out the notice of exchanges, but we have not seen a real uptick in questions," Pearson said.

About 450 businesses leaders attended the summit.

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