Catherine Rampell’s Aug. 4 op-ed, “Exploding the GOP myth about unemployment benefits,” correctly cited the deficiencies in the work disincentive argument. However, little or no coverage appears anywhere about the health insurance factor.

Many people who lost their jobs because of the novel coronavirus pandemic also lost their health insurance, paid in whole or in part by their employers. Those who need and/or realize the importance of health insurance, particularly in a pandemic, will have to get COBRA coverage through their employers, at 110 percent of the full cost of the insurance, or private insurance from the marketplace or elsewhere. The premiums will likely use up all or much of the $600 federal supplement to state unemployment benefits. The supplement is appropriate, and it is very disturbing that Democrats and Republicans could not come to a compromise of at least $400. The supplement will not be a disincentive to return to work because people will want to return in order to receive health insurance and other benefits from their employers.

Ron SiegelBethesda