Employer executives want healthcare reform, increased transparency

Survey says large firms also support consumer-directed health plans, wellness programs

Almost 74 percent of senior executives in the country's largest companies want policies that bring about comprehensive healthcare reform, better quality measurement and increased transparency, according to a new survey from the Pacific Business Group and the Robert Woods Johnson Foundation.

To accomplish those goals, employers support benefit designs such as increased consumer-directed health plans, price transparency tools and wellness programs.

"In the past, many employers have shied away from a more active role in healthcare policy, but a large majority of survey respondents see an important role for their companies going forward," Bill Kramer, study co-author and executive director for National Health Policy at PBGH, said in a statement that was emailed to FierceHealthPayer. "Many business leaders want to work together to leverage their collective strength to positively influence our healthcare system."

The study suggests that many large employers believe they will have a long-term role in improving their employees' well-being. Insurers would benefit from establishing collaborative relationships with employers if they want to continue participating in the employer-sponsored insurance market.

Key findings from the survey include the following:

  • Employer leaders believe innovative delivery systems such as patient-centered medical homes and accountable care organizations are very important to implementing more value-based payment methods.
  • Executives don't like the current fee-for-service payment model. Several even said it is a "broken" system.
  • Several execs said barriers to better quality measurement include lack of standardized definitions for certain conditions and procedures, as well as difficulty adjusting for risk among various patients.
  • Senior executives strongly support the tax exclusion of employer-sponsored insurance and don't know how private health insurance exchanges will influence the market. In fact, no major company signed up for private exchanges for 2015, FierceHealthPayer previously reported.

To learn more:
- read the survey (.pdf)

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