Why New Hampshire Is Second In The Nation For Employees With Health Insurance

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New Hampshire ranks second in the nation for insured employees.

The US Census Bureau delivered some interesting numbers that are difficult to understand. New Hampshire’s private sector workers have the second highest rate of health insurance in the US. Massachusetts, with its mandated coverage, is number one. That state requires larger employers to provide health insurance to employees. But how did New Hampshire with its relatively small number of large businesses and its mostly hands off approach to government regulation get the number two spot?

“New Hampshire has been a competitive market for a long time,” says Jean Ryer, program director of Endowment for Health. “For larger employers offering health coverage has been the norm,” she says.  That’s in part because historically the state has had low unemployment rates and fewer people looking for work.  That means the state’s large employers have had to compete to attract workers.  They’ve chosen to do that by offering health insurance.

“We’re still having trouble finding a skilled workforce for so-called ‘smart manufacturing,’” says Andrienne Rupp, Vice President of the Business and Industry Association of New Hampshire. Specifically, she says, hi-tech and component manufacturers are looking for workers. “Health insurance has long been a valuable benefit for employers,” Rupp says.

But New Hampshire employers pay some of the highest health insurance rates in the US–and those rates continue to go up.

“This is a time of drastic cutbacks in coverage and costs are being shifted to employees,” says Jean Ryer of Endowment for Health, “The quality of coverage has eroded over time.”


  • Anonymous

    Yeah except for those of us who are employed by employment agencies as permatemps. I have been working over 2 years at a premier Manchester company through an employment agency making $12/hr. with 1 week of vacation after a year with no other benefits. I am also one of these skilled workers that they talk about as an Electronic / QA Technician. Looking at many employment ads many companies for this type of work are hiring contract through employment agencies. If want more employees you have to pay more and offer meaningful long term employment.

    There should be at least some regulation on contract / temp agencies. I’m all for working long term contract employment, however the agency should not get half of what the client pays for it’s employees to be their. Epically when all that the agency did was place an ad on craigslist and screen resumes. Also contractors working long term should be offered reviews just as a perm employees and the agency should give pay raises to those who’s contracts are renewed beyond their initial term. After all they are making the agency money rather than if they where not working snf collecting unemployement

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