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Employer-sponsored coverage remains stable

Robert Wood Johnson Foundation credits individual mandate, federal subsidies

Employer-sponsored health insurance coverage--which was in decline prior to implementation of the Affordable Care Act--remained stable from June 2013 to March 2015, according to a new brief from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation's Health Reform Monitoring Survey (HRMS).

HRMS analyzed offer rates, take-up rates and coverage rates in employer-sponsored coverage, and found that offer rates remained constant at 82 percent to 83 percent for all workers, 61 percent to 62 percent for workers in small firms and 94 percent to 95 percent for workers in large firms.

Take-up rates remained consistent; about 86 percent to 87 percent for all workers, 81 percent to 82 percent for workers in small firms and 88 percent to 89 percent for workers in large firms. However, there was a slight increase in take-up rates among workers below 250 percent of the federal poverty level (FPL).

Additionally, HRMS found coverage rates remain unchanged at 71 percent to 72 percent for all workers, 49 percent to 50 percent for workers in small firms and 83 percent to 84 percent for workers in large firms. Similar to take-up rates, there was a small increase in coverage rates for employees below 250 percent of FPL.

The brief concluded that the stable outcome most likely was a result of the individual mandate as well as federal subsidies that allowed individuals to obtain coverage from employers. Thanks to the subsidies, many workers are in a better financial situation if they purchase insurance through their employer.

The brief builds off a previous Health Affairs study which found that the largest gains in health coverage are from increased enrollment in employer-based plans, FierceHealthPayer previously reported.

For more:
- here's the brief

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