McKinsey stands by employer health insurance survey

CHICAGO Tue Jun 21, 2011 10:29am EDT

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CHICAGO (Reuters) - Consultant McKinsey & Co on Monday defended the methodology behind its survey gauging employers' views on providing health insurance to workers, a report that drew criticism from U.S. health reform supporters.

The survey found 30 percent of respondents whose companies offered health insurance said they would "definitely" or "probably" drop coverage in the years following 2014, when the Affordable Care Act takes effect.

Senate Finance Committee Chairman Max Baucus, a Democrat, last week sent a letter to McKinsey calling on the company to release the methodology behind the survey, published earlier this month.

McKinsey, in a posting on its website, said the opinion survey of U.S. private sector employers was designed to measure their attitudes about healthcare reform and was not intended to be a predictive economic analysis of the impact of the Affordable Care Act.

"We stand by the integrity and methodology of the survey," McKinsey said.

Baucus said the survey results differed sharply from other research on the impact of health reform on employer-sponsored health insurance.

McKinsey said its survey results, published in a McKinsey Quarterly article, should not be compared to healthcare research and analysis conducted by others such as the Congressional Budget Office, Rand and the Urban Institute that use economic modeling and take a different focus.

"Comparing the McKinsey survey to economic estimates, such as the CBO's, is comparing apples to oranges," McKinsey said. "We understand how the language in the article could lead the reader to think the research was a prediction, but it is not."

Baucus on Monday blasted McKinsey's explanation in a press statement, saying the company was attempting to back away from data it previously characterized as valid predictions.

McKinsey said it alone funded the research, which was based on a questionnaire it developed. The consultant said it commissioned Ipsos, a market and opinion research company, to administer the online survey to respondents selected by Ipsos.

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Comments (7)
miller57 wrote:
In order for Universal health care to work we better make damn sure we require the vast majority of Americans to at least pay something. If we allow too many exemptions from people paying, in the name of “poverty” or hard times then the whole system will collapse. There is no such thing as “free healthcare” Healthcare workers will not work for free and the government cannot afford such a massive expense. The rich may pay more than the poor but they will balk at paying a lot more. Even if it were possible for the poor and lower middle class to have the free care. The ER’s and offices would be clogged up with these people seeking care for every cold and insect bite, just as is now happening on those with medicaid. No, everyone has to pay something and be invested in the system in order for it to work.

Jun 21, 2011 12:10pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
justiceserved wrote:
The poor clog the ER’s now because they don’t have healthcare and use it as their last resort. If we cut spending on our bloated military budget-6x China’s, 46% of all spending on military worldwide, Russia only spends 3% and went to single payer system, not fee for service we wouldn’t have to raise taxes a bit. The most expensive healthcare in the world and we rank 37th best in the world? That’s obscene!!!

Jun 21, 2011 1:08pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
Ken11 wrote:
I agree with miller57….we cannot give waivers to corporations, unions, non-profits or whatever….because people will game the system like many have been doing for years. McKinsey has it right….many comporations will dump their plans and put everyone into the government system. I cannot believe Obama is too dumb to see it….Biden…yes I understand he misses the point. Everyone must be mandated to pay something.

Jun 21, 2011 1:21pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
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