Survey: Majority Of Businesses Cite Morale, As Reason To Continue Providing Health Insurance

Yet another survey, this one from GfK Custom Research North America, finds that employers are unlikely to stop offering health care coverage as a result of the Affordable Care Act. Only 12 percent of businesses surveyed said they would consider dropping insurance:

Even in an environment of uncertainty about the future of health care reform, a majority of employers surveyed (56 percent) say that they are likely to continue to offer employer-sponsored health insurance after health care reform is enacted,… Only 12 percent of benefits decision-makers say they would be very or somewhat likely to drop coverage, and another 32 percent of the 502 private-sector companies surveyed are unsure what they will do.

Projections vary by the size of employer, with only four percent of decision-makers surveyed from those companies with 500 or more employees considering terminating coverage completely. In addition, decision-makers who say they are familiar with health care reform are less likely to foresee their dropping coverage (7 percent, versus 15 percent among those not familiar).

While 87 percent of company health care decision-makers said that increasing costs could force their companies to reconsider offering insurance, “nearly as many, 82 percent, say the effect on employee morale will be important” — suggesting that businesses may think twice about ending coverage if the decision would turn off highly valued employees and send them running into the hands of the competition. (Incidentally, those workers “receive better benefits and, through the tax system, better subsidies through employer provided coverage than through newly created insurance exchanges.”)