Percent of workers in establishments that offer coverage
Approximately half of the total U.S. population receives health coverage through employment-based insurance. However, not all employers offer health insurance coverage to their employees, which may present challenges to individuals who must seek health coverage elsewhere.
State Health Compare presents annual state-level data on the overall percentage of private-sector employees covered by a health insurance plan offered by their employer. This data comes from the Medical Expenditure Panel Survey – Insurance Component (MEPS-IC) fielded by the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ).*
*As SHADAC and other organizations have documented, due to the unprecedented pandemic and subsequent economic disruption in 2020, there is some uncertainty in the estimates of employer-based health insurance rates from the 2020 MEPS-IC. Researchers should approach using 2020 data with caution, and SHADAC will continue to monitor any future changes to federal data releases directly or indirectly related to the pandemic.
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This report provides an overview of the 2021 MEPS-IC private-sector ESI estimates, and considers how trends in ESI coverage and cost have evolved over the past three years, since the pre-pandemic baseline (2019), since the first year of the pandemic (2020), and in 2021.
Data from the Medical Expenditure Panel Survey-Insurance Component (MEPS-IC) show employer-sponsored health insurance (ESI) remains the largest single source of coverage for most Americans, with 62.2 million private-sector workers enrolled in ESI in 2021. SHADAC’s analysis of 2021 MEPS-IC ESI data provides an overview of employee access to coverage and the costs associated with coverage plans.