Milwaukee businesses take part in Affordable Care Act panel

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MILWAUKEE (WITI) -- The new national health care law goes into effect on October 1st and a recent survey shows only 25% of Americans understand the Affordable Care Act.

Experts say Wisconsin businesses will be impacted and Milwaukee area companies have differing opinions on the new law. On Thursday, September 26th, the Milwaukee Press Club held a discussion panel regarding the impact of the health care overhaul.

David Mitchell, CEO of Monarch Corporation, a mining equipment company in northeast Milwaukee, says he's worried about being able to provide health benefits for his 50 employees once the Affordable Care Act is implemented.

"I'm concerned about providing them competitive health care in this environment so that I can get them the benefits they need and keep the highly-skilled labor that we need to produce the product that we produce for our customer base," said Mitchell.

President and CEO of Froedtert Health, Cathy Jacobson, says she's optimistic about the changes coming to her industry.

"The system is actively trying to change. I've been in health care for over 30 years and it's the first time I'm seeing real demonstrative movement to change, real things going on, and that's a great outcome," said Jacobson. "Even folks who have employer-based health care today, their employers are going to have to face a lot of changes and challenges over the years. Who's to say how that's all going to roll out?"

Jacobson says the question she hears most from patients is "what do I have to do on October 1st?" She says most people are more concerned with the personal impact of the Affordable Health Care Act than with the political one.

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