Benefits and Compensation

EBRI Study: Fewer Small Businesses Offering Health Coverage

By David Slaughter, JD, Senior Legal Editor

According to a new study by the Employee Benefit Research Institute (EBRI), the proportion of small employers offering health coverage to their workers has declined, but not so with larger employers.

Between 2008 and 2015, the percentage of employers with fewer than 10 employees fell from 35.6% to 22.7%, EBRI found. For employers of 10 to 24, this rate dropped from 66.1% to 48.9%, and even employers of 25 to 99 saw a decrease from 81.3% to 73.5% during that time period.

Among larger employers, however, the percentage offering health benefits has remained high—around 99% for employers with 1,000 or more employees, and in the 92.5% to 95.1% range for employers of 100 to 999, according to EBRI’s study, which used data from the Medical Expenditure Panel Survey—Insurance Component. EBRI undertook the analysis to learn how health insurance offer rates had been affected by the ACA, as well as the Great Recession and the subsequent recovery.

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