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September 15, 2005

Fewer American Employees Have Health Insurance Cover

As corporate health insurance premiums rise in the USA, fewer companies are offering health benefits to employees. In 2000 69% of companies offered health insurance to their staff, now the figure stands at just 60%.

Just in 2005, premiums went up 9.2% (employment based health insurance). With the US inflation rate at around 3% this is quite a net increase. Some may take solace from the fact that this is the first non-double digit increase since the beginning of this century.

This is according to a report published by Kaiser Family Foundation and Health Research & Educational Trust. The report concluded that health care is fast becoming unaffordable for many companies and workers throughout the USA - something virtually unheard of in the rest of the developed world. In many developed countries, every citizen has universal health care coverage. In the UK nobody pays for health care - even prescriptions are limited to $10 per prescription (the government pays the rest).

For small and new companies, the rising costs are becoming so burdensome that many are just not opting in (offering company based health care to their employees). Many that continue to offer it are asking their staff to contribute. Employees now contribute to about 25% of their premium - paying in $1,094 more per year than they were five years ago.

Written by Christian Nordqvist
Editor - Medical News Today

Posted by Tom Troceen