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Half Of Small Business Owners Think Healthcare Reform Is Bad For Business

Written by Tim Morral
Published: 5/22/2013

New Gallup poll shows that nearly one in two entrepreneurs are pushing back hiring plans due to concerns about the Affordable Care Act.

Since the Affordable Care Act (ACA) was enacted in 2010, you might think that small business owners have come to terms with healthcare reform and the implications it will have for their employee benefits programs. But according to a recent Gallup poll, that simply isn't the case.

What Do Small Business Think About ObamaCare?

In a survey of 603 U.S. small business owners, Gallup found that 48 percent of owners believe the ACA will be bad for their businesses. Thirty-nine percent of small business owners indicated that they don't think it will have any impact on their companies, while just 9 percent feel that it will actually be good for them.

Other findings from the poll include:

  • 52% of owners feel the ACA will reduce the quality of healthcare they and their employees receive; 13% believe that it might increase their quality of care.
  • Most small business owners (55%) believe healthcare reform will increase the amount they spend on healthcare.
  • 41% of owners have held off hiring new employees due to the ACA and 38% have delayed plans to grow their companies.
  • So far, just 19% of business owners have reduced their staff size based on healthcare reform requirements and 18% have reduced employees' hours. However, one in four have considered not providing any healthcare insurance for their workers.

Entrepreneurs' concerns about healthcare reform appear to be driven by the expectation that the ACA will significantly increase the costs associated with healthcare benefits. There are also worries about mandates associated with the new law and the likelihood that small businesses will be required to pay more in exchange for a lower quality of healthcare.

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