According to data from the Ohio Department of Job and Family Services, more than 100,000 low-wage employees in Ohio receive Medicaid benefits (Source: “100,000 Ohio workers getting Medicaid,” Columbus Dispatch, Sept. 30, 2009).
Wal-Mart has the most employees on Medicaid, with more than 15,000, followed by McDonald’s, with nearly 13,000 employees covered by Medicaid.
The release of the information coincides with new legislation that would require the state to annually publish the names of companies with the most employees on Medicaid. Supporters of the legislation say they hope such a report would put pressure on employers to provide coverage for their employees.
"The state of Ohio cannot afford to pick up the cost of corporate irresponsibility," said Rep. Dan Stewart, D-Columbus.
For its part, Wal-Mart, which has topped similar lists in more than 20 states, says it offers some of the best health-care coverage in the retail sector.
"We have 94.5 percent of our associates (with) health-care coverage from either the company or through a spouse or parent," said Greg Rossiter, a spokesman for Bentonville, Ark.-based Wal-Mart. "We've made significant strides in getting our associates covered."