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June 01, 2011
Medical Insurance Costs Rise Average 9.5% for Healthcare Industry

Medical insurance costs are continuing to rise for healthcare employers across the country, according to a press release from Compdata Surveys. The 2011 Compensation Data Healthcare Survey results show healthcare organizations reported an average premium increase of 9.5 percent. Sixty nine percent of respondents indicated they pay more than $9,600 annually for an employee plus family plan.

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"The rising cost of insurance premiums is something that continues to be an issue for healthcare organizations," said Amy Kaminski, director of marketing for Compdata Surveys, the nation's leading pay and benefits survey data provider. "To counteract these rising costs, organizations have to look in different directions in order to continue providing quality coverage for their employees."

Premium costs remain high for employers as 70 percent pay more than $7,200 for an employee plus spouse plan. Sixty one percent of survey respondents report paying more than $7,200 in premium costs for an employee plus children plan. Employee only plans cost employers between $2,400 and $7,200 per year.

Employers are often forced to shift some of the cost to their employees in an effort to offset the increasing outlay. Sixty three percent of organizations increased the employee portion of the premium, whereas 49.7 percent have increased deductible levels. Eighty two percent of organizations report utilizing coordination of benefits in an effort to avoid overlap of benefit costs.

One way to reduce costs to the employer is through the type of plan offered. More companies are beginning to offer a high deductible health plan (HDHP) to employees. In 2011, 19.4 percent of healthcare organizations reported offering an HDHP compared to just 13 percent in 2009. The most prevalent coverage offered among healthcare organizations is a PPO plan, offered by 84.3 percent of organizations. HMO plans are the third most common, offered by 18.7 percent.

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