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Virginia-Care: Keeping Health Insurance Costs Down for a Small Businesses

Business leaders like Virginia Donohue would like to provide health insurance for her employees, however it wasn't until a health care tax credit became available through the Affordable Care Act that she was able to.

Ed. Note: This was originally published on

Virginia Donohue and her husband started Pet Camp in 1997 with a love of their dogs and little else. Located in San Francisco, California, they provided group play, open spaces, and a pool. Cats had disco lights to play with, aquariums to watch and wide window sills for perches. When the business became sustainable in 2000, Virginia says, it was time to provide health insurance to their employees.

“To me it’s a moral issue. People need to have health care and how we get it is through work,” she says. “I have been one of the employers out there saying, ‘Look, offering health care is important.’”

Watch Virginia's story here:

Virginia says that when she heard about the health care tax credit for small businesses available under the Affordable Care Act, “I was really excited.”

The health care law’s tax credit for small businesses is making it more affordable for Virginia’s company offer health coverage to its employees. She uses the funds from the tax credit to offset the company’s insurance costs. The health care tax credit, she says, amounted to about $7,000 in 2010 and about $8,000 for 2011.

The tax credit is also helping her company stay competitive in the marketplace for good employees.

“We offer health insurance because we want to attract and retain the best employees that are out there, and I think to do that you have to offer quality benefits. … [F]or us, that includes health insurance … that includes bring[ing] your dog to work,” Virginia says.

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Learn more about how the Affordable Care Act is helping Small Businesses: For more information: