A majority of HR professionals feel that implementing the requirements of health care reform will increase their administrative burden and costs, according to a recent survey conducted by XpertHR in partnership with emedia. Three quarters of respondents answered 'yes' when asked, "Do you expect the requirements of the Affordable Care Act to increase your employer's administrative burden?"
This response tracks with the ObamaCare Burden Tracker recently released by the House Ways and Means, Education and the Workforce, and Energy and Commerce Committees. The burden tracker estimates that job creators, families and health care providers will spend over 127 million hours per year on compliance efforts.
The time spent on complying with the law is not all that is expected to increase. According to the survey results, approximately eight out of 10 HR professionals expect to see an increase in employer health care costs as a result of implementing health care reform requirements. Approximately 76 percent of the respondents think employees will also see an increase in their health care costs. In fact, only one out of 10 respondents thinks that employees' health care costs will decrease.
The survey also revealed some interesting facts about readiness to meet health care reform requirements and the decision to "pay or play." A surprising 83 percent of the respondents are either somewhat or very confident that they are on track to meet the law's complex requirements. The big "pay or play" decision remains up in the air for some, with about three out of 10 HR professionals reporting that they are still undecided as to whether they will offer coverage or pay the penalty and a mere two percent "paying" the penalty. Sixty-four percent plan to "play".
When asked, "What is your overall opinion about the impact of the Affordable Care Act?" less than three percent of the respondents felt that health care reform would improve either the quality of health care in the US or the overall health of US citizens.
The survey was completed by over 300 HR professionals including Vice Presidents (11 percent) and HR Directors (31 percent); among major industry sectors, with the top sectors being manufacturing (15 percent), health care/hospitals (11 percent) and education (8 percent). Twenty-one percent of the responses came from employers employing 1,000 to 4,999 employees, followed by employers employing 100 to 249 (16 percent) and 50 to 99 (11 percent).
Health Care Reform Resource Center