More Small and Midsize Companies Opt to Self-Fund Workers’ Health Plans Despite Potential Risks: Might Clinical Labs Benefit from This Trend?

Self-insurance trend could push more businesses to independent and local clinical laboratories if self-insurers prefer to offer employees local access to testing services

Three years after the roll out of the Affordable Care Act’s (ACA’s) major provisions, more small and midsize companies may be opting to self-insure their employee health plans rather than face the coverage mandates and administrative costs imposed by Obamacare, a recent study found. It is uncertain how this trend will improve the access clinical laboratories and pathology groups have with these patients.

The Employee Benefit Research Institute (EBRI) study looked at trends in private sector self-insured health plans between 1996-2015, with a focus on 2013-2015, to assess whether the ACA might have affected those trends.

Researchers analyzed survey data from nearly 40,000 employers that participated in the US Census Bureau’s Medical Expenditure Panel Survey Insurance/Employer Component. They found that from 2013 to 2015: (more…)