It’s undeniable. Employer-sponsored health insurance premiums have been increasing significantly over the past fifteen years. According to a recent infographic by the Kaiser Family Foundation and JAMA, premiums have increased to a tune of 134% since 1999. Here’s a look at the infographic and six key trends in employer-sponsored health insurance.
Average Premiums Increased 174% From 1999 to 2014
In just 15 years, the average annual premium increased from $2,196 in 1999 to $6,025 in 2014 -- an increase of 174%. With premiums increasing at a much faster rate than overall inflation and workers' earnings, the true cost of health insurance to workers is even higher.
Cost of Family Coverage Increased 109% Since 2004
In 2004, an individual was able to get coverage for about $3,695/year. A family in the same year would have paid about $9,950/year (a difference of $6,255/year). Fast forward ten years and that difference has increased. In 2014, an individual can be covered for around $6,025/ year - nearly what it cost to cover a family in 2004. For a family in 2014, it is around $16,834. That’s a difference of $10,809, which is a dramatic increase (109%) in only 10 years.
Workers of Low-Wage Firms Pay More For Coverage
With employer-sponsored health insurance, the employer pays a portion (contribution) towards its employee’s premium. According to the infographic, these contributions vary significantly between low-wage and high-wage firms.
In 2014, workers at lower-wage firms paid nearly half (46%) of their health insurance premiums with an average contribution of $6,472/year. At higher-wage firms, workers paid only a quarter (26%) of their health insurance premiums with an average contribution of $4,497/year.
Average Deductible Increased to $1,800 at Small Firms
Going hand-in-hand with this trend is that of deductibles among workers enrolled in a single coverage plan. For small firms (with 3-199 workers), deductibles have risen from an average of $775 in 2006 up to $1,797 in 2014. Average deductibles at large firms (with more than 200 workers) went from $496 in 2006 to $971 in 2014, or a difference of $475—a substantial amount less than the increase from small firms.
Nearly All Large Firms Offer Wellness Programs
Because health benefit programs are an integral part of a firm's ability to recruit and retain top talent, various programs and options are offered. In 2014, 98% of all large firms offerred one or more wellness programs. Fifty-one percent (51%) offer biometric screening and 51% provide employees the opportunity to complete a health risk assessment.
Only 55% of Firms Offer Health Insurance
As the cost of premiums increase, the number of firms who offer employer-sponsored health insurance has been decreasing. In 2000, 67% of large firms and 57% of small firms offered health insurance. In 2014, those numbers dropped to 62% of large firms and 44% of small firms. Overall, only 55% of firms offered health insurance in 2014 - down from 63% in 2000.
Infographic - Trends in Employer-Sponsored Health Insurance
Disclaimer: The views represented in this infographic do not necessarily reflect the views of Zane Benefits, its staff, or its affiliate partners.
Source: Kaiser Family Foundation and JAMA.
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