Wednesday, February 17, 2021

Private Sector Employee-Only Health Premium Costs in the South Central Region

The annual premium cost for employee-only (i.e. single premium) health insurance for private sector employers in the South Central region of the U.S. generally falls below national average rates. Texas private-employers, large and small, face single premium health insurance rates that align fairly closely with the national average rate for similar sized private employers.  Elsewhere in the region, employee-only health premium rates typically fall below the national average.  An exception is in Louisiana, where small business rates run higher than the national average for private employers with fewer than 50 employees.  A closer look at the data from the most recent Medical Expenditure Panel Survey (2019), which is administered by the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, shows the following about private sector employee-only health premium costs in the South Central region and nationally:

State (1) Small Firms (2) Large Firms Overall Avg.
AL $6,420 $6,538 $6,519
AR $5,545 $6,148 $6,054
KY $6,697 $6,674 $6,678
LA $7,402 $6,599 $6,748
MS $6,885 $6,069 $6,199
OK $6,381 $6,791 $6,711
TN $6,221 $6,686 $6,630
TX $6,974 $6,966 $6,967
U.S. $6,920 $6,983 $6,972

(1) fewer than 50 employees
(2) 50 or more employees

Source:  Medical Expenditure Panel Survey  Table II.C.1 - Average total single premium (in dollars) per enrolled employee at private-sector establishments that offer health insurance by firm size and State: United States, 2019