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McKinsey Issues Statement on Controversial Health Reform Survey Results

June 22, 2011
Related Topics: Finance/Taxes, Benefit Design and Communication, Health and Wellness, Health Care Benefits, Latest News

Consultant McKinsey & Co. is defending the methodology behind a controversial survey reporting that 30 percent of employers may drop their health care plans after key provisions of the health reform law kick in, but also says the results should not be interpreted as predictive of what employers will do.

“The survey only captured current attitudes. Employers’ future actions will be determined by many considerations,” including their ability to attract and retain talent and actions taken by competitors, McKinsey said in a written statement.

The survey reported that 30 percent of respondents said they “definitely” or “probably” would drop coverage after 2014.

In the statement released June 20, McKinsey said the 1,300 respondents ranged in size from organizations with less than 20 employees to those with more than 10,000 employees.

“They represent a cross section of employer size segments, industries and geographies,” McKinsey said.

McKinsey also said that “to make answers” on questions regarding what employers would do in 2014 and beyond “more informed,” it provided factual information on certain health care reform law provisions, including whether a provision or particular action would have an adverse impact on the employer or employee.

Senate Finance Committee Chairman Max Baucus, D-Montana, said June 20 in a statement that McKinsey “made clear and definitive predictions, and, in the face of tough questions, simply changed their story.”

The report, Baucus said, “did not provide employers with enough information for them to make honest choices and fair evaluations.”

McKinsey’s findings vary from other surveys on the issue. For example, consultant Mercer in New York found that 6 percent of employers with at least 500 employees and 20 percent of employers with 10 to 499 employees said it was likely they would drop coverage in 2014.  

Filed by Jerry Geisel of Business Insurance, a sister publication of Workforce Management. To comment, e-mail


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