Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Current Health Insurance Pain

Newsweek reported:

The average total health care premium per employee for large companies is projected to be $9,821 next year, up from $9,028 now. The amount employees will be asked to contribute toward this cost is $2,209, or 22.5% of the total premium, up 12.4% from last year. 

This shows the inanity of President Obama's pledge suggesting people can keep the insurance they had in 2008.  Those policies are long gone, as evidenced by.

Average employee out-of-pocket costs (copayments, coinsurance and deductibles) are expected to be $2,177 next year—a 12.5% increase from this year. These projections mean that in a decade, total health care premiums will have more than doubled, from $4,083 in 2001 to $9,821 next year. Employees' share of medical costs—including employee contributions and out-of-pocket costs—will have more than tripled, from $1,229 in 2001 to $4,386 next year. 
Employers shifted cost increases to employees.  At what point do they drop the benefit altogether and pony up the fine?  Paying $2,000 per employee (for firms with more than 50 workers) could save $8,000 per head. 

CBO projections show employer sponsored coverage falling to 48.5% of all Americans.  It was 63% in 1998.  That 48% may be optimistic given current trends.

Update 8-24-11:  Many large employers plan to dump their health insurance benefit come 2014.   I theorized this was the aim of health reform, a seismic shift in who provides and pays for health care coverage.  That seems to be playing out.

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