69% of Employers Plan to Offer Healthcare Coverage After 2014
It also provides some relief from consistent concerns that the PPACA will contribute to higher unemployment. Few organizations report that they are changing their workforce hiring or reduction strategies as a result of healthcare reform. Only 16% have adjusted or plan to adjust hours so fewer employees qualify as full-time.
The IFEBP survey results demonstrate that employers have developed some level of comfort with the healthcare reform law. In the 2012 survey, 31% of respondents were still taking a "wait and see" approach to the PPACA. By 2013 only 10% were still sitting on the fence.
In a telephone interview, Julie Stich, research director for the Milwaukee-based International Foundation of Employee Benefit Plans, credited the Supreme Court decision affirming the healthcare law and the end of the election season with putting employers in a "move on" frame of mind. "There's more certainty now among employers regarding how employee healthcare coverage will be affected," she adds.
Employers are now taking a more proactive approach to incorporate PPACA rules and regulations into their business models. The actions most frequently mentioned by survey respondents:
- Developing tactics to deal with the implications of healthcare reform (52%)
- implementing changes to make their health plans compliant (39%)
- Developing multiyear approaches to reform (38%)
- Modeling the financial impact of the ACA on their organization (37%)
Cost containment is critical as "employers across the country… deal with the impact of implementing the PPACA while still being able to provide competitive benefits for their employees," says Stich.
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