Employees in Small Businesses Are More Likely to Have High-Premium Health Plans
AHRQ News and Numbers, June 23, 2010
Nearly 13 percent of workers with employer-sponsored health plans who worked in firms with 10 or fewer employees had premiums of $7,200 or more a year for single-coverage plans in 2008, according to the latest News and Numbers from the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ). This amount is much higher than the $4,704 average, national premium for employer-sponsored single-coverage health plans in 2008.
The Federal agency's analysis also found that:
- By comparison, only about 4 percent of workers enrolled in plans sponsored by large businesses—with 1,000 workers or more—had premiums of $7,200 or more for employer-sponsored, single-coverage health plans. The national average premium in large business for this type of coverage was $4,340.
- For family coverage, about 7 percent of enrolled workers in small businesses had premiums of at least $19,000 in 2008, but only about 4.5 percent of employees in large companies had premiums that high. The national average premium for a family-coverage health plan in 2008 was $11,650 (less than 10 employees) and $12,595 (1000+ employees), respectively.
- Across all businesses, 5 percent of employees with single coverage had premiums of $7,200 or more, while 5 percent of employees with family coverage had premiums of $19,000 or more.
AHRQ, which is part of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, improves the quality, safety, efficiency, and effectiveness of health care for all Americans. The data in this AHRQ News and Numbers summary are taken from the Medical Expenditure Panel Survey (MEPS), a detailed source of information on the health services used by Americans, the frequency with which they are used, the cost of those services, and how they are paid.
For more information, go to Enrollment in High Premium Employer-Sponsored Health Insurance, Private Industry, 2008.
For other information, or to speak with an AHRQ data expert, please contact Bob Isquith at Bob.Isquith@ahrq.hhs.gov or call (301) 427-1539.