Pennsylvania-based Geisinger Health Systems will soon offer health benefits for domestic partners of its 8,000 employees, a change in policy the company said was needed to keep up with changing demographics and help with recruitment.
The changes, which will include same-sex partners, will go into effect January 1. The changes also will help single parents, who will save money on premiums, the health system said.
"We wanted to be a little more responsive to the changing demographics," said spokeswoman Margaret Heffers.
Geisinger spokesman Mark Davis said the changes were driven by requests by workers. And now the company could see some reward for the changes. Companies that add benefits for unwed partners usually see enrollment grow by 1% to 3%, according to Washington, D.C., gay advocacy group the Human Rights Campaign.