More Employers Contribute to Employee Health Accounts

February 12, 2014 ( – Nearly three-quarters of employees (71%) with a health reimbursement account (HRA) or health savings account (HSA) say their employers contributed to it in 2013.

According the 2013 Consumer Engagement in Health Care Survey, conducted by the Employee Benefit Research Institute (EBRI) and Greenwald & Associates, the percentage of employers contributing to their employees’ health accounts has been steadily increasing since 2009.

The survey findings show that more employers were contributing among employees with employee-only coverage and an employer contribution, but that the percentage of employers that contributed $1,000 or more decreased to 23% in 2013. Among employees with family coverage, findings show that employer contribution levels were mostly unchanged.

Findings also reveal that on average, employees with employee-only coverage dropped their HSA contribution levels last year but those with family coverage kept contribution levels relatively steady. While both low- and high-income employees lowered their contributions in 2013, low-income employees were less likely to contribute than high-income employees.

In terms of enrollment in a plan with an HRA or HSA, the survey shows that 11.8 million adults between ages 21 and 64 (9.7% of the U.S. population) were enrolled in one. An additional 9.3 million say they were covered by an HSA-eligible plan but had not yet opened the account. Overall, 21 million employees between age 21 and 64 with private insurance were already in a consumer-driver health plan (CDHP) or covered by an HSA-eligible plan. When children were included, that figure rose to 26.1 million individuals.

More information about the survey findings can be found under the title “Employer and Worker Contributions to Health Reimbursement Arrangements and Health Savings Accounts, 2006 – 2013,” which is featured in the February issue of EBRI Notes.