Wisconsin’s small employers continue to drop their group health insurance plans, according to a member survey released by the state’s largest small-business advocacy group, NFIB.
According to the survey, approximately 35% of Wisconsin’s small business owners currently do not offer health insurance to their employees, said Bill G. Smith, state director of the 13,000-member chapter of NFIB/Wisconsin.
"Last year, 61% of small employers offered some type of group coverage, but this year, just 57% indicated they offered a health plan — 10% fewer than just two years ago, which translates into thousands of small business owners, their employees and their families who likely no longer have coverage," said Smith.
Smith also noted that of those small business owners who do not currently offer health insurance, approximately 10% of them had offered insurance within the last five years.
"According to member testimony and letters, in the last year small business owners were forced to cut hiring and expansion plans, and employees were asked to pay higher premiums and co-pays," Smith said. "Unfortunately, many have also been forced to drop coverage altogether for themselves and their workers."
Feb. 20, 2004 Small Business Times, Milwaukee