More than a Third of Small Firms Pay Whole Health Premiums

February 23, 2005 ( - Two-thirds of small businesses provide health insurance benefits for their employees according to a new study.

A news release said the poll from the International Profit Associates Small Business Research Board (IPA SBRB) found that a third don’t offer health coverage. Among small businesses offering health insurance, 34% pay the entire premium while 36% pay more than half and nearly a third (29%) pay up to half of the premium.

Despite concern about escalating health care costs, 88% of those in the IPA SBRB poll said they would maintain or increase the amount they are contributing.

Looking at the whole company, the cost of such coverage is the second biggest factor affecting their firms with nearly one in five (18%) saying health coverage expenses were at the top of their list. Just over a third (32%) cited general economic factors. Other answers included:

  • finding quality employees – 16%
  • ability to obtain capital – 10%
  • taxes – 8%
  • interest rates – 6%
  • foreign competition – 4%
  • government regulation – 4%

More than 175 small businesses owners and senior managers participated in this IPA SBRB poll. The voluntary survey was conducted via phone, e-mail and fax. International Profit Associates, Inc. (IPA) is the largest privately-held provider of management consulting services to small and medium sized businesses. More information is at .