Group Health Insurance - How Many Americans are Offered Coverage?

Written by: Christina Merhar
April 19, 2016 at 12:30 PM

Despite the market shifts in the United States toward individual health insurance  Group Health Insurance - How Many Americans are Offered Coverage?coverage, the majority of nonelderly Americans (56 percent) still receive group health insurance coverage through an employer. The coverage rate, however, has decreased slowly from 67 percent in 1999. This is according to a new study by the Kaiser Family Foundation (KFF) that analyzed offer and coverage rates in 2014.

So, how many Americans are offered - and accept - group health insurance coverage through their employer? Read on for a concise summary of the new report.

Trends in Group Health Insurance Offer and Coverage Rates

According to KFF’s report:

  • Offer rates are down, but steady: In 2014, 66 percent of nonelderly workers received an offer of coverage from their employer - a decrease from a 71 percent offer rate in 1999.

  • Coverage rates are also steadily decreasing. Not all employees enroll in offered coverage. In 2014, 56 percent of nonelderly people were covered by group health insurance. This rate is similar to recent years, but a decline from the 67 percent covered by group health insurance in 1999.

  • Offer rates are significantly lower for part-time workers. Less than a quarter (21 percent) of employees who worked part-time (fewer than 30 hours a week at all their jobs) were offered coverage from their employer.

  • Offer rates are higher for high-income earners. Workers in higher income households (above 400 percent of the Federal Poverty Line) were most likely to receive an offer of group health insurance coverage (78 percent), whereas workers in households with lower incomes (earning less than the FPL) were least likely to receive an offer of coverage (30 percent).

Related - How Much Does Group Health Insurance Cost?

Selected Charts

Trends in Group Health Insurance Offer and Coverage Rates, 1999-2014

Percent of the Nonelderly Population Enrolled in Group Health Insurance, 1999–2014

Percent of Workers Offered Group Health Insurance by Household Poverty Level, 1999-2014


According to a new report by KFF, employer-provided group health insurance remains the primary way for Americans to purchase coverage. With the implementation of the Affordable Care Act, analysts have predicted a significant shift away from employer-based coverage to the individual market. This report indicates, however, that as of 2014 the shift is occurring slowly. What do you think about the study? Do you think there will be a major shift to the individual market? We’d love to hear your thoughts or questions in the comments below!

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Topics: Group Health Insurance, Kaiser Family Foundation, Healthcare Costs

Additional Resources

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