Companies Shift Health Costs to Employees
Even as insurance premium growth slows
By Kevin Spak,  Newser Staff
Posted Sep 3, 2010 11:16 AM CDT
Health insurance costs are being foisted on workers.   (Shutterstock)

(Newser) – Employers foisted a lot more health insurance costs onto their employees this year than last, even though premiums only inched upwards, according to an annual survey. Though premiums for businesses rose just 3% this year—their lowest increase in a decade—the cost the average employee was paying jumped 14%, the Wall Street Journal reports. “It’s the first time I can remember when employers have coped with costs by shifting it all to workers,” said the head of the Kaiser Family Foundation, which issued the survey.

Employers are still paying about 70% of their workers’ premiums, but that’s down from 73% last year, and 74% five years ago. “It's no surprise, since businesses are struggling to keep their doors open,” said a US Chamber of Commerce rep. “The premium increase may have been modest but it's still a premium increase.” The number of workers shifted into high-deductible plans increased, too; now 17% of workers have deductibles over $1,000, compared to 6% in 2006.
 

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