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PA Residents Losing Employer Coverage at Rate Second Only to CA
Date:10/31/2007

medical loss ratio, and provisions to ban medical underwriting. All of these measures would help to reduce rate increases and make insurance more affordable. Pennsylvania is one of only three states that allows medical underwriting, a practice that permits an employee's health status and medical history to be considered when rates are set.

"My premiums increased this year from $450 per month to $600 per month for each employee, and I dropped my coverage," said Paul Bennett, Director of the Discovery and Learning Center for children in Upper Darby. Cover All Pennsylvanians would offer me an option to do the right thing and get my employees the coverage that they deserve, but that I just can't afford today."

There is good news in an otherwise grim report, according to Ward. Pennsylvania still has much higher rates of employer-based coverage and smaller percentages of citizens without insurance than most states. "The Prescription for Pennsylvania, like similar proposals in California and Illinois, looks to reign in cost drivers and expand coverage," said Ward. "Delaying action on the governor's plan will postpone the problem but make it more difficult and more costly to resolve in the long run."

Among the study's other main findings were:

-- The number of uninsured nationwide grew in 2006 to 47 million-up by 8.6

million.

-- Individuals among the bottom 20 percent of household incomes were the

least likely to have employer coverage: 21.9 percent of the bottom

income quintile were covered, compared to 86.2 percent for people in

the highest income quintile.

-- No category of workers was insulated from loss of coverage. Even full-

time workers, workers with a college degree, and workers in the highest

wage quintile, experienced declines in coverage between 2000 and 2006.

-- 70.6 percent of Pennsylvanians and 63.2 percent of Americans had

insurance through an employer i
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SOURCE Keystone Research Center
Copyright©2007 PR Newswire.
All rights reserved

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