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image concept of rising cost of health insuranceA national poll of 500 small- and medium-sized businesses shows healthcare costs are the biggest concern for employers and many have taken steps to lower those costs, at times by passing them on to employees through higher premiums or by reducing coverage.

In addition, more than one-third of the respondents of a PublicPrivate Strategies (PPS) poll, have considered dropping healthcare coverage altogether.

The poll, released this week, also shows that small business owners are open to a wide range of market and legislative solutions across the ideological spectrum.

“Rising healthcare costs continue to crush small businesses’ ability to compete, innovate, and grow,” said Rhett Buttle, founder and principal of PPS. “These latest numbers show us that small business owners are concerned about this issue because it’s vital to the health of their business and communities. They see this as a critical priority for lawmakers to tackle.”

The poll finds that 3 out of 4 small business owners who offer health insurance to their employees describe rising healthcare costs as a top problem. When asked to choose the biggest challenges facing their business, the cost of providing healthcare to employees is at the top of the list.

The poll also found that 69% of businesses report their health care costs have increased in the last four years. A third of these report annual increases of 10% or more.

For more on the PPS poll, visit here.

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