Compliance with health care reform is already driving up costs for some employers’ group health plans, and a majority of employers expect price increases to be passed on to employees, according to a Willis Group Holdings survey.
Though most employers haven’t yet calculated the cost of compliance with the PPACA, of those who did, more than 55 percent said their total health care costs had risen at least two percent as a direct result of the reforms. More than 15 percent of those employers said their costs have risen in excess of 5 percent since 2010.
“Now that the health care reform act has entered the implementation phase, the costs and benefits associated with the act are coming into greater focus for employers,” says Jay Kirschbaum, practice leader for Willis Human Capital Practice. “The survey suggests employers realize that costs of providing medical benefits will increase and that they will likely have to pass those costs on to their employees.”
Employers report that their most significant cost drivers are the provision of adult child coverage up to age 26 and the removal of the annual/lifetime limits for “essential health benefits.”