Johns Hopkins Survey Reveals Hidden Dimension of Health Care Crisis
*Virtually all (99 percent) of the large nonprofits responding reported offering health benefits to employees but less than half (46 percent) of the smallest organizations did, and cost was a major factor at work.
*Nearly three out of every four nonprofits offering health benefits reported that their organization's total direct health insurance costs increased during the past year, and for over a third of the respondents the increase was over 10 percent—well above the national average of 5 percent per year.
*These recent increases come on top of increases in previous years: based on an earlier Listening Post survey of a comparable set of organizations, average health benefit costs for these organizations grew by nearly 40 percent between 2004 and 2009. In the process, health benefits as a share of total employee compensation grew by over 12 percent, suggesting that health benefit costs are squeezing out pay increases and other aspects of employee compensation.
*The vast majority of nonprofit executives (80 percent of respondents) expect such increases to continue in the future, and about a third expect the increases to exceed 10 percent.
"Our nation’s health care crisis is now threatening the ability of nonprofits to effectively carry out the tasks our nation expects of them – sheltering the homeless, training the unemployed, educating our youth, building affordable housing, counseling families, delivering health care, giving voice to the powerless, and enriching our lives with culture and the arts," noted Peter Goldberg, chair of the Listening Post Project Steering Committee and CEO of the Alliance for Children and Families. "This is the hidden dimension of America’s health care crisis, and we need to fix it."
The 412 nonprofit organizations responding to the Listening Post survey included children and family service agencies, elderly housing and service organizations, community and economic development organizations, museums, theaters, and orchestras.