The Effect Of An Employer Health Insurance Mandate On Health Insurance Coverage And The Demand For Labor: Evidence From Hawaii

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Executive Summary

Over the past few decades, policy makers have considered employer mandates as a strategy for stemming the tide of declining health insurance coverage. In this paper, the authors examine the long term effects of the only employer health insurance mandate that has ever been enforced in the United States, Hawaii's Prepaid Health Care Act, using a standard supply-demand framework and Current Population Survey data covering the years 1979 to 2005. During this period, the coverage gap between Hawaii and other states increased, as did real health insurance costs, implying a rising burden of the mandate on Hawaii's employers.

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