New Survey Shows 9.2 Percent Rise in Health Insurance Premiums in 2005Thursday, September 15, 2005
(American Meat Institute)Health insurance premiums paid by employers
increased an average of 9.2% in 2005, according
to the 2005 Annual Employer Health Benefits
Survey just released by the Kaiser Family
Foundation and Health Research and Educational
The 2005 increase ended four consecutive years of double-digit increases, but the rate of growth is still more than three times the growth in workers’ earnings (2.7%) and two-and-a-half times the rate of inflation (3.5%). Since 2000, premiums have gone up 73%.
The survey found that three in five firms (60%) offered coverage to workers in 2005, down significantly from 69% in 2000 and 66% in 2003. The drop stems almost entirely from fewer small businesses offering health benefits, as nearly all businesses (98%) with 200 or more workers offer such benefits.
Of the firms that do not offer health benefits to their workers – the overwhelming majority of whom are small firms – most cited cost as a key factor. Nearly three in four (73%) said high premiums were “very important” to their decision. In comparison, just over half (52%) said their firm’s small size and one in three (33%) said the fact that their workers had access to other coverage were very important to their decision.
For more information about the survey, go to: http://www.kff.org/insurance/chcm091405nr.cfm