A new survey sponsored by Travelers reveals that many businesses may not be prepared for implementation of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA).

The survey, conducted in March by Nielsen Research, found that 25 percent of the more than 800 corporate decision-makers polled have not yet begun preparing for PPACA compliance. More than a third (36 percent) said they are not very familiar with the PPACA’s overall requirements, and another 31 percent reported being only somewhat familiar with the requirements.

These results suggest that many companies may face potential penalties and management liability risks that could result in lawsuits, regulatory actions and reputational harm.

Still, more than 55 percent of employers surveyed said they do not plan to receive assistance from an independent agent or outside legal counsel to better understand the risks to their organization.

“Most of the public attention around healthcare reform has focused on the new health insurance coverage mandates, giving employers very little information and context for the additional liability exposures the PPACA creates for them if they are not in compliance,” said Jeffrey Klenk, senior vice president of management liability for Travelers Bond & Financial Products. “The good news is that there are tools available to help organizations of all sizes address these risks as they prepare to implement the PPACA.”

Travelers is offering several solutions to assist policyholders in preparing for these new risks, including a risk management portal to help agents and customers answer common questions about the healthcare law and liability concerns. Information on the website provides details about the new PPACA requirements and the management liability exposures employers face.

Travelers also will offer resources such as model notices and educational materials addressing the PPACA’s requirements and related management liability exposures. In addition, Travelers directors and officers, employment practices and fiduciary policyholders will have exclusive access to an ACA Hotline, where policyholders will have direct access to attorneys specializing in the PPACA.

Source: Travelers