Data Bank Focus: Who Pays for Health Care Benefits?

By Betsy Shepherd

Mar. 16, 2012

Data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics show that among all civilian workers participating in a health care benefits program, 21 percent enjoy “free” insurance for themselves. Their employer pays the full premium, which on average is about $460 monthly.

For the 79 percent of employees who are required to make a contribution, their average monthly share of the premium is roughly $102. Their employers pay an average of about $342 monthly.

Among all of these employees, employers pay on average 80 percent of the premium, and employees pay the remaining 20 percent. One exception is among union workers, whose employers pay 89 percent of the premium. Another exception is among workers by pay level—the lower the income level, the greater the employee’s share of the premium.

Workforce Management, March 2012, p. 16-18

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