Employers “Vote” on Presidential Candidates’ Health Care Platforms: Prefer Middle Ground Between the Two Approaches

The majority of U.S.-based employers want to continue to provide health care coverage, yet oppose a government mandate to do so, a survey released today indicates. Employers prefer a middle ground between the presidential candidates’ health care proposals.

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Health Care Reform: Debating the Presidential Debate

New York, NY (PRWEB) November 1, 2008

The majority of U.S.-based employers want to continue to provide health care coverage, yet oppose a government mandate to do so, a survey released today indicates.

“Health Care Reform: Debating the Presidential Debate,” conducted by Buck Consultants, an ACS company and one of the world’s leading human resource and benefits consulting firms, finds that employers prefer a middle ground between the presidential candidates’ health care proposals.

A majority of employers responding to the survey prefer a health care system that resembles what exists today, but with:
· a private sector safety net for the uninsured,
· a continuing, and potentially expanded, role for consumer-directed health plans, and
· a national promotion of health and wellness to control costs

The survey analyzed responses from more than 160 organizations in virtually every industry.

Most of the survey respondents prefer to continue providing health care coverage; only 32 percent would rather be out of the business of providing health care to employees. A majority also believe that a federal mandate to provide coverage would put a strain on their competitiveness. “The majority of employers feel that a health care mandate would hurt their ability to compete globally and differentiate themselves in recruiting,” said Chantel Sheaks, a principal at Buck Consultants. “Only 17 percent feel that such a mandate would expand health care coverage.”

Other key findings include:
· If a mandate becomes law, two-thirds believe employers should have plan design discretion, including the option to offer consumer-directed health plans – characterized by a medical plan with a high deductible, coupled with a health care savings account.
· Only 21 percent of respondents believe that one candidate’s proposal to expand coverage by enhancing competition between employer plans and individual insurance policies would reduce the number of uninsured.
· Seventy-two percent believe enhanced competition would drive healthy employees into the individual market, leaving more costly individuals in the employer plans.
· Only 53 percent of respondents would be inclined to promote health and wellness in the workplace if they are not the primary source of health insurance.

Buck Consultants, an ACS company, is a leader in human resource and benefits consulting with more than 1,500 professionals worldwide. Founded in 1916 to advise clients in establishing and funding some of the nation’s first public and private retirement programs, Buck is an innovator in the areas of retirement benefits, health and wellness programs, human capital management, and employee communication. News and other information about Buck Consultants are available at http://www.buckconsultants.com. Buck is an independent subsidiary of Affiliated Computer Services, Inc.

ACS, a global FORTUNE 500 company with 63,000 people supporting client operations reaching more than 100 countries, provides business process outsourcing and information technology solutions to world-class commercial and government clients. The company's Class A common stock trades on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol "ACS." Learn more about ACS at http://www.acs-inc.com.

The survey report, “Health Care Reform: Debating the Presidential Debate,” is available to the media by contacting Ed Gadowski at 201-902-2825. It is also available to other interested parties at no cost from Buck’s Global Survey Resources, 500 Plaza Drive, Secaucus, NJ, 07096-1533. Telephone 1-800-887-0509. It also can be ordered online at http://www.bucksurveys.com.

Media Contact:            
Ed Gadowski            
Media Relations            
Buck Consultants, LLC            
201-902-2825
edward.gadowski @ buckconsultants.com

This press release was distributed through eMediawire by Human Resources Marketer (HR Marketer: http://www.HRmarketer.com) on behalf of the company listed above.

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