Home About Latest Browse RSS Advanced Search

Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco
Working Paper Series
Union effects on health insurance provision and coverage in the United States
Thomas C. Buchmueller
John DiNardo
Robert G. Valletta
Abstract

Since Freeman and Medoff's (1984) comprehensive review of what unions do, union density in the U.S. has fallen substantially. During the same period, employer provision of health insurance has undergone substantial changes in extent and form. Using individual data from various supplements to the Current Population Survey and establishment data from the 1993 Robert Wood Johnson Foundation survey, we investigate the effects of unionization on employer provision of health benefits. We find that in addition to increasing coverage by employer-provided health benefits, unions reduce employee cost sharing and substantially increase the probability that employer-provided health plans extend to retirees. The union effects on coverage for current employees and for retirees have risen over time, and our estimates suggest that declining unionization explains about 17-20 percent of the decrease in employer-provided health insurance between 1983 and 1997.


Download Full text
Cite this item
Thomas C. Buchmueller & John DiNardo & Robert G. Valletta, Union effects on health insurance provision and coverage in the United States, Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco, Working Paper Series 2000-04, 2000.
More from this series
JEL Classification:
Subject headings:
Keywords: Labor unions ; Insurance; Health
For corrections, contact Noah Pollaczek ()
Fed-in-Print is the central catalog of publications within the Federal Reserve System. It is managed and hosted by the Economic Research Division, Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis.

Privacy Legal