Employee Contributions to Sponsored Health Plans Reaches All-Time High
A new report shows the contributions employees makeÂ to their employer-sponsoredÂ health insurance plans have reached an all-time high. The report, released by actuarial consulting firm Milliman Inc., says that costs have more than doubled for some American families over the past nine years andÂ show few signs of dropping this year.
Health-Care Costs Paid by Workers Jumps to 40 Percent
The Milliman report has revealed that while employers still pay most of the total health care costs for families, the portion paid by workers has reached an all-time high of almost 40 percent for the year.
The firm noted thatÂ larger contributionsÂ haveÂ been required to compensate for increases at the pharmacy, inpatient/outpatient hospital and doctor’s office that have affected health care costs as a whole.
The firm’s health care cost measurement, known as the Milliman Medical Index, studied provider fees, benefits and average health care use in all 50 states. Included in the costs are insurance premiums for health care and other out-of-pocket costs likeÂ co-payments,Â deductibles andÂ co-insurance payments.
Health Costs for Employees Projected to Jump to $8,008
According to the report, employees who pay intoÂ Preferred Provider Organization (PPO) employer-sponsored health insuranceÂ plans for a family of four are expected to dish out a projected $8,008 this year. This represents an increase of $84 aÂ weekÂ over the annual payment made in 2002, which was $3,634.
The health care costs for employer contributions have increased as well. When combining employee and employer costs for a family of four, the total for the year so far is $19,393 from $9,235 in 2020. This 2011 total represents a 7 percent increase from 2010.
While the rise in health care costs is slower in 2011 than other years, costs are still rising at a much faster rate than costs inÂ other consumer areas. And it looks thatÂ the trendÂ in cost increases is notÂ expected to change soon.
Lorraine Mayne, consulting actuary for the firm and one of the report’s authors, toldÂ The Washington Post, “We don’t see anything on the near-term horizon that’s going to bend that downward.” She also noted that the health care overhaul has so far had no impact on risingÂ health care costs for the year.