Deloitte's 2012 survey shows employers plan to shift healthcare costs to employees

August 15, 2012

While employer-sponsored health benefits are not likely to disappear, changes that shift financial risk to employees are certain.

According to Deloitte, U.S. employers are concerned about continued rising healthcare costs; however, they are unaware of solutions that could improve the safety and quality of care, and simultaneously reduce cost. While employer-sponsored health benefits are not likely to disappear, changes that shift financial risk to employees are certain, according to the company’s survey.

The survey of employers with 50+ workers offering health benefits explores employers’ opinions about the U.S. healthcare system, the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA), and anticipated strategies for employee health benefits coverage and cost containment.

Survey results also revealed:

35% of employers surveyed grade system performance as an “A” or a “B.” Employers hold favorable views about the system’s clinical capabilities and medical innovation, but unfavorable views center on its wastefulness and high costs.

Employers believe that they have a “good” understanding of the PPACA. Familiarity with the individual mandate is the highest (72%). Most employers say their company is “not well prepared” to implement the 2014 provisions of the ACA.

30% think the PPACA is “a good start,” 59% “a step in the wrong direction.” 

To manage healthcare costs, increased cost sharing with employees is considered the optimal strategy. 

When considering healthcare related strategies to reduce the deficit, employers support reforms in medical liability, Medicare and Medicaid, and repeal/delay of the PPACA. Across-the-board cuts in government spending are considered a higher priority than changes to the healthcare system.

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