Premiums for health insurance rose little more than inflation in the past year, according to a new study from the Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation. That's the good news.
The bad news is that you're paying for it in other ways.
Kaiser's annual survey found that family premiums for employer-sponsored insurance now average $16,834. That's only a three percent increase from last year, and more or less in line with general inflation (two percent) and the average increase of workers wages (2.3 percent). And it's a far cry from the double-digit increases of the late 1990s and early 2000s. Workers, on average, are contributing an average of $4,823 toward family premiums.
The average for individual premiums is $6,025, of which workers contribute, on average, $1,081.
The problem is that deductibles are continuing to rise steadily. So while workers and employers don't seem to paying more for their insurance, in reality, they're being asked to kick in more cash before their coverage actually starts paying for most services.
This year, 80 percent of workers have a general annual deductible, which averages $1,217. That compares to an average of $826 as recently as 2009.
The survey also found that the percentage of workers in so-called grandfathered plans is steadily declining. Grandfathered plans are those that pre-date Obamacare. Their continued existence, even though they may not meet the requirements of the Affordable Care Act, is thanks to President Obama's pledge that if you like your plan, you can keep it. This year, 26 percent of workers are in grandfathered plans, down from 36 percent last year and 48 percent in 2012.