New findings from the National Federation of Independent Business (NFIB) report on “Small Business Problems and Priorities” released just this month reinforce yet once again the fact that the primary concern of small business owners is the rising cost of health insurance. Health care concerns have been top-of-mind among small business owners throughout the quadrennial survey’s 30-year history. However, this year, the percentage of small business owners who feel the health insurance cost problem is critical beat the second biggest concern―uncertainty over economic conditions―by a full 14 percentage points. Energy costs and uncertainty over government actions ranked third and fourth respectively.
On the issue of health care more specifically, the NFIB argues that the Affordable Care Act (ACA) focuses too much on ensuring more Americans have health care coverage and too little on controlling skyrocketing costs, a point on which many would agree. In an effort to bring this and a number of other concerns to the forefront of America’s consciousness and citing the fact that a majority of its members wanted the ACA repealed, NFIB was one of a number of organizations that recently challenged the law in the U.S. Supreme Court. That verdict was rendered earlier this summer and not in NFIB’s favor.
The Court’s decision coupled with the perception that controlling health care costs seems to be of little national priority has prompted NFIB and other opponents to predict that the cost of health insurance will remain a critical issue of concern for small business owners as the next survey rolls around in another four years. Proponents of the legislation, many of whom are in fact small business owners and entrepreneurs as well, would argue that the potential benefits of the ACA over time are many.
For an overview of how the affordable care act might affect your small business and the debate over its possible pros and cons, click here to read our recent blog on the subject. And to view the NFIB’s most recent survey findings more fully, just click on “Small Business Problems & Priorities” to see the full report now!