The number of employees with employer-sponsored health insurance (ESI) declined more than 10 percent between 2000 and 2011, a new study has found.
A Robert Wood Johnson Foundation study examined the workforce and found “significant declines” of employees with health insurance in most states, a trend that researchers found was disproportionate between low-income (more than 10 percent decline) and high-income workers (less than 3 percent decline).
The percentage of companies offering health insurance declined similarly during this period, a drop of 9 percent as the study found that the decade started with 58.9 percent of businesses offered insurance and ended at 52.4 percent. Researchers also found that premiums for single employees doubled during the period, increased by 125 percent for families, and the percentage that employees were required to contribute toward health insurance also increased from 17.5 percent to 20.8 percent.
This trend puts a tremendous burden on healthcare providers as patients protected by employer-based health insurance represent a lower risk than those who purchase their own insurance (and are frequently underinsured) or those without any insurance at all.