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1 In 5 Small Businesses Don’t Know What They Will Do About Employee Health Insurance, EMPLOYERS Survey Finds

One in five small businesses remain undecided about the type of healthcare benefits they may offer employees in the next three years, according to a new study released today by EMPLOYERS ® (NYSE:EIG), America's small business insurance specialist ® . The survey polled decision-makers at businesses with between one and 250 employees.

EMPLOYERS Small Business Opinion Poll Snapshot:
  • 41 percent of small businesses currently provide health insurance for their employees
  • 20 percent plan to provide health insurance directly to employees within the next three years
  • 20 percent are not sure what they intend to do within the next three years
  • 14 percent expect to refer all or some employees to state-based health benefit exchanges within the next three years

“We were pleasantly surprised to see how many businesses that are not mandated to provide health insurance options under the Affordable Care Act still intend to provide this benefit to employees in the next three years,” said Stephen Festa, executive vice president and chief operating officer for EMPLOYERS.

Eight percent of small businesses with one to four employees expect to provide health insurance directly to their employees. That climbs to 43 percent for small businesses with 20-99 employees and 48 percent for businesses with 100-250 employees.

These intentions reflect small business decision-makers’ attitudes toward health care as a business priority.
  • 33 percent of small businesses see health insurance as a strategic business necessity
  • 20 percent of small businesses believe health care insurance is a drain on cash flows
  • 14 percent of small businesses don’t think much about it
  • 4 percent say they provide health insurance but wish they didn’t have to

“While many of these signs are encouraging, the bottom line is that a lot of uncertainty about healthcare remains among small businesses,” Festa said.

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