Companies have begun looking to their employee benefits administration to find financial solutions before the Affordable Care Act (ACA) comes into effect. But new research found the last decade saw significant drops in employer-provided health coverage and in workers who accept those benefits.

According to a report prepared by researchers at the University of Minnesota's State Health Access Data Assistance Center for the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, the years between 2000 and 2011 saw a decrease of 11.5 million Americans with employer-provided health insurance. In 2000, around 170.5 million workers were enrolled through their company, while in 2011 that dropped to 159 million. Increasing insurance costs for employers and fluctuating rates might be a factor in why the number of workers with health benefits declined so sharply. Premiums have also climbed, with the study noticing family-premiums rose 125 percent during the decade.

More staff members are refusing health coverage through their employer as well, with only 58.9 percent of employees on their company's policies in 2000 falling to 52.4 percent in 2011. 

With the ACA approaching in 2014, HR administrations might want to consider looking into the company's health insurance options and surveying employees about their plans to stay on employer-provided coverage. 

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