Related BLS programs | Related articles
October 1995, Vol. 118, No. 10
Michael Bucci and Robert Grant
I ncreasingly more employees can choose from a variety of health care plans, thanks to the growing prevalence of preferred provider organizations (PPO's) and health maintenance organizations (HMO's) offered by employers during the past 15 years. New data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics show that two-fifths of full-time workers in private industry were offered a choice of health plans. More than one-half of full-time private establishment employees were offered a PPO or HMO plan, and nearly one-third of those who were offered health insurance could choose from more than one type of plan.
During the 1992-93, 58 percent of private establishments offered their full-time employees at least one health plan. (See table 1.) Nearly 90 percent of those establishments offering a health plan offered only one plan, and less than 2 percent offered more than four plans. However approximately one-third of private establishment employees that were offered health care could choose from more than one type of plan. These employees selected traditional fee-for-service plans more often than PPO's and HMO's for nearly every combination of plan types offered.
Since its inception in 1979, the Employee Benefits Survey1 has provided data on the percentage of workers who receive employer-provided health insurance through different types of funding arrangements. During this period, the percentage of employees covered by alternative health care "delivery systems" such as HMO's and PPO's has grown significantly. (HMO's offer pre-paid care from a select group of providers; PPO's allow employees to choose their provider, but offer financial incentives when designated doctors and hospitals are chosen.) As a result, the share of health care participants covered by fee-for-service plans has declined.
This excerpt is from an article published in the October 1995 issue of the Monthly Labor Review. The full text of the article is available in Adobe Acrobat's Portable Document Format (PDF). See How to view a PDF file for more information.
Read abstract Download full text in PDF (475K)
1 The Employees Benefits Survey has provided information on the incidence and provisions of employer-provided benefit plans since 1979. The survey includes details on paid leave, employer-sponsored insurance, and retirement. Three different sectors of the economy are studied in odd years. Medium and large private establishments (100 or more employees) are studied in odd years. State and local governments and small private establishments (1-99 employees) are studied in even years. Data in this article are from the 1992-93 surveys of private establishments; preliminary work on this subject has been published in "Health Insurance: Employer Offerings and Employee Choice in Small Private Establishments," Compensation and Working Conditions (Bureau of Labor Statistics, August 1994), p. 1, and "Health Insurance: BLS Reports on Employer Offerings and Employee Choice in State and Local Governments, 1992" (Summary 94-7).
Within Monthly Labor Review Online:
Welcome | Current Issue | Index | Subscribe | Archives
Exit Monthly Labor Review Online:
BLS Home | Publications & Research Papers