Focus on Health Care: Changes to Benefits Likely

More than four out of 10 retail and CPG executives surveyed expect to change their health care benefits policies due to the Affordable Care Act.

One in five predict the vast majority of their workers will seek insurance on a state or federal exchange as it becomes available, while 35.8 percent expect none of their workers will use the exchanges, according to original research by Retail Leader conducted in September.

The survey results suggest 39.2 percent of respondents don't offer health care insurance to workers currently, while 28.9 percent of respondents say their companies provide health coverage for full-time employees only. About 15.5 percent offer health coverage for full-time and part-time employees. About 22.7 percent offer dental coverage to full-time employees, and 7.2 percent offer vision care coverage to full-time employees.

Most companies offer some wellness benefits, with 72.7 percent offering flu shots, 38.6 percent offering blood pressure and diabetes screening and 31.8 percent offering smoking cessation assistance.

Retail Leader's economic survey suggests executives overall are more negative about business conditions than they were during the summer, with 32.0 percent describing the current situation as positive, down from 46.5 percent in Retail Leader's July/August survey. The future also looks cloudy, with 36.4 percent optimistic about the next six months, a 14.8 point drop from 51.2 percent in July/August.

Q: Do you expect to change your health care benefits policies due to the Affordable Care Act?
Q: What proportion of your workforce do you expect to seek insurance on a state or federal exchange as they become available?
Percentage of responses received for each categoryProportion of workforce expected to seek insurance on a state/ federal marketplace
Q: Which of the following wellness benefits have you offered in the past 12 months?
Flu shots
Blood pressure and diabetes screening
Smoking cessation assistance
Employee Assistance Programs
Information on healthy living
Health risk assessment
Nutrition education
Incentives for participation in wellness programs
Disease management programs
Weight loss programs
Discounts to area fitness centers
On-site fitness facility
Source: Retail Leader Market Research, 2013
How would you describe current business conditions?
Where do you expect to see business conditions for the next six months?