Employer Plans Cover More, Despite Higher Costs

December 12, 2000 (PLANSPONSOR.com) - Despite increased health care costs, the number of American workers covered by an employer-based health plan increased last year.

Nearly three-quarters (73.3%) of American workers were covered by an employer-based health plan in 1999, up slightly from the 72.8% covered in 1998, according to the Employee Benefits Research Institute.

Overall, 42.1 million people under age 65 were uninsured in 1999, compared to 43.9 million people in 1998, according to EBRI.

The percentage of uninsured Americans under age 65 fell from 18.4% in 1998 to 17.5% last year, according to the study.

The study found that company size had a major impact on health coverage. Families of employees working for a company with fewer than 10 employees had a 32.2% probability of being uninsured, compared with just 10.7% for those working at firms with more than 1,000 workers.

The highest rate of uninsured were found in:

  • New Mexico (29.4%)
  • Texas (25.8%)
  • Arizona (24.3%)

States with the lowest rate of uninsured individuals include:

  • Rhode Island (8.1%)
  • Minnesota (8.9%)
  • Iowa (9.5%)