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Yearly Premiums for Family Health Coverage Rise to $12,680 in 2008, Up 5 Percent, As Many Workers Also Face Higher Deductibles
Date:9/24/2008

f plan, the average deductible rose to $560 in 2008, up nearly $100 from 2007.

"With rising deductibles, more and more people face a substantial amount out of pocket for their health care before their insurance fully kicks in," Kaiser President and CEO Drew Altman, Ph.D., said. "Health insurance is steadily becoming less comprehensive, and it's no wonder that in today's tough economic climate many families count health care costs as one of their top pocketbook issues."

"Even modest growth in premiums and deductibles can result in financial challenges for many working families, particularly when coupled with high food and gas prices in 2008. But rising health care costs are also a burden on employers, particularly small businesses," said HRET Interim President John Combes, M.D.

The annual Kaiser/HRET survey provides a detailed picture of how employer coverage is changing over time in terms of availability, cost and coverage. It was conducted between January and May of 2008 and included 2,832 randomly selected, non-federal public and private firms with three or more employees (1,927 of which responded to the full survey and 905 of which responded to a single question about offering coverage). The annual percentage premium increase is calculated by comparing this year's average premium to last year's, a change in methodology designed to be more reflective of changes across the entire market.

Most Workers Are In PPOs, Though Enrollment Rises In HSA-Qualified Plans

Preferred Provider Organizations continue to dominate the employer market, covering 58 percent of covered workers. Health Maintenance Organizations cover 20 percent of workers, with 12 percent in Point-of-Service plans, 8 percent in consumer-directed plans, and 2 percent in conventional indemnity plans.

The share in consumer-directed plans -- high-deductible plans that include a tax-preferred savings option such as a Health Savings Account (HSA) or Health Reimbursement
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SOURCE Henry J. Kaiser Foundation
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