Fewer Small Businesses Offer Health Coverage
Fewer than half of small businesses in California provide health care coverage for their workers, according to an informal survey by Union Bank of California, the Los Angeles Times reports.
The bank surveyed nearly 2,000 businesses statewide that had annual sales of less than $5 million. About two-thirds of respondents were Union Bank customers.
The survey finds that:
- 48.5% of businesses said they provide health coverage, compared with 53.1% in 2003;
- 18% of businesses that do offer coverage increased workers' share of the costs;
- 8% of businesses offering coverage reduced benefits;
- 25% of businesses offering coverage reduced benefits and increased workers' costs; and
- Small businesses in Southern California are more likely to offer coverage than those in other areas in the state.
The Union Bank survey marks the first time in six years that employers that provide health insurance benefits are in the minority (Robinson, Los Angeles Times, 3/3). This is part of the California Healthline Daily Edition, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.