Tuesday, October 10, 2006
Dash from PlanSponsor.com (free registration required) this morning reports on a slight slowing of health care cost increases in this country:
‘POCKET "CHANGE." While 2006 average health-care rate increases were 7.9%, Hewitt Associates is projecting a 7.7% average increase for employers in 2007. The average health cost per person for major companies will increase from $7,744 in 2006 to $8,340 in 2007, while the amount employees are being asked to contribute in 2007 will be $1,678, representing 20% of the overall health-care premium.
Average employee out-of-pocket costs, such as co-payments, coinsurance, and deductibles, also are expected to increase, and employees' total health-care costs — including employee contribution and out-of-pocket costs — are projected to increase 7.8% from 2006 levels. Hewitt predicts that increases in employee contributions will continue to offset salary gains for many workers next year.