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East Bay Business Times

Employers blame HMOs for health care woes, survey says

Dec 18, 2001

Breaking News
A recent survey of California employers found that 79.5 percent of business owners in the state believe HMOs and insurance companies are "very responsible" for health care system's problems.

According to the survey, taken from mid October until the end of November, 70 percent of business owners said they would support a system where employers paid into a health care fund that would cover all residents if they were guaranteed coverage for their employees at a lower cost. The Business Health Survey was a collaborative effort by the California Nurses Association, California Medical Association, American Small Business Alliance, and the Foundation for Taxpayer and Consumer Rights.

More than three quarters of the respondents -- 76.4 percent -- said HMOs and managed care decreased health care quality for the sick while 92.9 percent complained about premium increases. The results were based on a 127 responses from 1,000 executives contacted for the survey.

The survey also found that:

  • In the wake of Sept. 11, 70.1 percent supported increased "government funding to expand community health clinics for the poor.
  • More than two-thirds said they would probably support combining the workers' compensation system with the health insurance system.
  • Just over 55 percent said they preferred nonprofit organizations administering health plans.

The full results can be viewed at http://www.businesshealthsurvey.org.