Low-wage workers face more than just one obstacle in trying to obtain health care coverage, according to a Commonwealth Fund report. They are more likely to not have benefits, and they are also more likely to not have paid sick days so that they lose money for the doctors' visit and the lost day at the same time.
"We often focus on the cost of providing affordable health insurance coverage and ensuring access to health care for workers and families, but rarely consider the price of failing to help workers stay healthy and productive," says Commonwealth Fund President Karen Davis.
Lower-wage workers have fewer benefits*
* Based on a telephone survey taken Sept. 3, 2003–Jan. 4, 2004. The analytic sample consists of 1,963 part-time and full-time workers who are not self-employed.
SOURCE: WAGES, HEALTH BENEFITS, AND WORKERS HEALTH, COMMONWEALTH FUND BIENNIAL HEALTH INSURANCE SURVEY (2003)