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Health insurance enrollment rates are down at large companies

The percentage of employees at large companies who were eligible for health insurance and who enrolled in plans fell from 87 percent in 1996 to 80 percent in 2004, according to data from AHRQ's Medical Expenditure Panel Survey (MEPS) Insurance Component: In addition:

  • The steepest decline occurred among employees of large retail firms—from 81.5 percent to 69 percent.
  • Enrollment of eligible workers in other types of large, private-sector firms also declined, but more modestly.
  • Enrollment of eligible wholesale trade workers slipped from 92 percent to 86 percent and construction worker enrollment declined from 87 percent to 82 percent.

Editor's Note: These data are from the Establishment Survey of Employer-Based Health Insurance, available online at

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