New Survey Data Highlights Continuing Concerns About Health Care Expenses

Small business is big in Texas. There are over 3 million small businesses in our state, with over 5 million employees and they contribute billions of dollars to…

Small business is big in Texas. There are over 3 million small businesses in our state, with over 5 million employees and they contribute billions of dollars to the Texas economy. But these businesses face challenges from rising interest rates, inflation, and employee recruitment and retention. And those challenges are made even worse by the skyrocketing expense of health care.

Recently, Small Business for America’s Future, a national coalition of business owners and leaders, conducted a national survey of 1,015 small business owners including responses from Michigan, North Carolina, Texas, and Washington that provided critical insights into the challenges and perspectives surrounding small business healthcare expenses. The findings from Texas small businesses are particularly concerning.

  • 90% experienced increased premiums last year, with nearly one in three facing more than a 15% hike, indicating the severity of rising healthcare expenses.
  • 81% indicated that healthcare expenses have an impact on their business’s bottom line (51% say the impact is significant).
  • 74% of respondents do not offer health insurance, mainly hindered by the high expense (59%), emphasizing the necessity for affordable healthcare options.
  • 69% believe that the current healthcare market is not functioning effectively and requires action. This strong consensus reflects widespread dissatisfaction with the current state of healthcare pricing and delivery, emphasizing a call for substantial reform.
  • 30% said high healthcare expenses have constrained growth, and hiring (26%), and led to price increases for goods/services (35%).

The good news is that there is strong consensus among small business owners that these challenges can be addressed through legislative measures like price transparency (83%), site-neutral billing (78%), and regulating anti-competitive practices (88%).

And the Texas Legislature has been taking critical steps to advance these measures, including HB 711 (88R) which was signed into law in 2023. Texas Employers for Affordable Healthcare is continuing to bring together small business leaders and Texas lawmakers to inform policy solutions that will lower the price of healthcare, making it more accessible and more affordable to all Texas businesses.

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