The 17th Annual Towers Watson/National Business Group on Health Employer Survey on Purchasing Value in Health Care tracks employers' strategies and practices, and the results of their efforts to provide and manage health benefits for their workforce. This report identifies the actions of high-performing companies, as well as current trends in the health care benefit programs of U.S. employers with at least 1,000 employees. Respondents were also asked about specific implications for their health care benefit programs attributed to the health care reform Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA).

The survey was completed by 512 employers between December 2011 and January 2012, and reflects respondents' 2011 and 2012 health program decisions and strategies and, in some cases, their 2013 plans. Respondents collectively employ 9.2 million full-time employees have 8.0 million employees enrolled in their health care programs and operate in all major industry sectors. In 2011, respondents spent, on average, $10,982 per employee on health care, which equates to a collective $87 billion in total health care expenditures.