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Small Biz Health Care Survey: Affordability Still a Major Concern

WASHINGTON, DC – Over 66% of small business owners responding to a new survey conducted by the National Association for the Self-Employed (NASE) ranked “decreasing monthly premiums” as the one thing they would change about their current health care plan.  The new survey of small business owners released today by NASE, the nation’s leading advocate and resource for the self-employed and micro-business community, comes days before the closing of the 2015 health care open enrollment period. 

The survey, conducted October 27, 2014 through January 19, 2015, gauges the opinions of 188 small business owners and self-employed entrepreneurs nationwide on the issue of health care. In addition to the overwhelming majority of respondents citing the monthly premium costs as a major concern, 53% of those surveyed said they had either “low” or “very low” confidence they will be able to obtain both affordable and comprehensive health care coverage in 2015. 

Affordability of health care coverage continues to be a major concern of small business owners across the country,” said Katie Vlietstra, Vice President for Government Relations and Public Affairs for NASE.  “Greater than 23% of those we surveyed are budgeting to spend more than $10,000 on health care expenses alone this coming year.  That level of spending on health care costs hurts the bottom lines of America’s smallest businesses and it impedes their ability to save, grow and create new jobs.  The small business community is the engine of our nation’s economy and the cost of health care coverage continues to clog the fuel line.” 

Much of the recent attention around the new health care law has focused on the availability of tax subsidies to help offset or defray costs for some low-income Americans.  However, more than 80% of the survey’s respondents answered that they did not qualify for these tax subsidies and therefore would not be eligible for any assistance. Vlietstra recently called on the Administration and Congress to work together on ensuring more affordability and flexibility in the health care system.

Click here to view the full survey and results

With just two-weeks until the end of open enrollment, NASE also released an infographic highlighting the top five tips to prepared small business owners for purchasing health insurance.  56% of respondents in NASE’s health care survey released today said they were planning on making changes to their health care coverage in 2015.

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