McKinsey drops survey details

After pressure from Democrats, consulting firm McKinsey released a statement Monday, along with the full questionnaire about its now-controversial survey predicting a significant drop of ESI coverage due to health reform.

In the statement, McKinsey said they stand by the survey's “integrity and methodology.”

In February, McKinsey & Co. commissioned a survey of 1,329 U.S. private sector employers to measure their attitudes about health care reform. The survey, which McKinsey paid for itself as part of its “routine, proprietary research,” found 30 percent of respondents will “definitely” or “probably” stop offering employer-sponsored health insurance after 2014.

“The survey was not intended as a predictive economic analysis of the impact of the Affordable Care Act,” McKinsey said in their statement. “Rather, it captured the attitudes of employers and provided an understanding of the factors that could influence decision-making related to employee health benefits.”

The White House and other key House Dems pressured McKinsey to release its methodology, calling the survey findings an “outlier." Critics to McKinsey's report also pointed to several other credible surveys and studies that indicate the ACA would not negatively affect employer decisions on health care coverage for employees. 

McKinsey addresses that accusation in their statement saying, “As such, our survey results are not comparable to the health care research and analysis conducted by others such as the Congressional Budget Office, RAND and the Urban Institute. Each of those studies employed economic modeling, not opinion surveys, and focused on the impact of healthcare reform on individuals, not employer attitudes.”

“Comparing the McKinsey survey to economic estimates, such as the CBO’s, is comparing apples to oranges,” they say.

McKinsey says they commissioned Ipsos, the third largest market and opinion research company in the world, to field the online survey based on a questionnaire developed by McKinsey. Respondents were drawn from a panel of nearly 600,000 people maintained by Ipsos, not from McKinsey clients. Ipsos administered the survey directly, using their wholly owned online panel.

Additionally, the respondents worked for companies that ranged in size from less than 20 employees to more than 10,000.

In its questionnaire, McKinsey insisted to respondents that the information would be treated confidentially and only evaluated in a statistically condensed form.

Get more: Coverage of McKinsey's employer health care survey

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