Are health insurance premiums continuing to rise? In some cases yes, in others no. Families saw the biggest rise in premiums. For a full year of coverage, the average family will pay over $13k according to a report from the Kaiser Family Foundation. The average employee pays about $3,500 towards that bill, and the employer pays the remainder. This is an increase of 5% over last year. While it is not as bad as some increases earlier in the decade, it is still disturbing. Here is why. While the average cost for family coverage increased 5%, the average worker saw their wages increase 3.1%. Meaning, once again, health insurance costs increased faster than income growth. There is some good news. Premiums for individual coverage remained the same. Other costs related to health care have also increased. In 2006, only 10% of covered workers had a deductible of $1000 or more. In 2009, 22% of covered workers have a deductible over $1000. Not only have insurance premiums increased, but the amount of money a worker pays out of pocket has also increased. Based on these numbers, I’d imagine the health care debate will continue for some time. If you have a financial question for Ross, you can use the Marino on Money page.
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