Politics
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Study: 1 in 10 American employers to drop health care coverage

Almost one in 10 employers in the U.S. plans to drop health care coverage in reaction to President Obama’s health care reform, according to a study by the consulting company Deloitte. Eighty-one percent of companies surveyed intend to maintain insurance for their workers, while 10 percent remain unsure.

Currently, nearly two-thirds of Americans get health insurance through employers, according to the U.S. Department of Health and Services. Opponents of the Affordable Care Act have worried that companies will cut back on health insurance as the new law takes effect.

After 2014, companies with 50 or more full-time employees that refuse to provide health benefits will be penalized at least $2,000 per worker. Almost one-third of respondents said they might drop coverage if the ACA requires them to provide better benefits than they currently do, or if the cost of the penalty is less than the cost of insurance.

Though most companies intend to keep insuring staff, Deloitte found that the majority of employers say their company is “not well prepared” to implement the new health care provisions, and will likely increase cost sharing with employees to manage the new expenses.

The company says they surveyed 560 random employers with 50 or more employees between February and April, before the Supreme Court upheld the law. Deloitte told the Wall Street Journal that the firm does not believe the ruling affects the results because most employers thought the law would be upheld.