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Iowa Employer Health Premiums Up 7% in 2012

David P. Lind BenchmarkToday we issued our Press Release on the results from our 14th annual Iowa Employer Benefits Study©. As you might imagine, there is a wealth of data coming from this years’ survey, but perhaps the most striking number for me is also the headline number – 7 percent.

This number is BIG because it is…well, the SMALLEST number we have observed in the last 14 years. We have been surveying employers since 1999 (2001 was the first year we began asking questions on premium adjustments). With this relatively “tame” increase, Iowa employers reported making the following changes to their health plans during the past 12 months:

  • Increased deductibles (20 percent of respondents)
  • Raised out-of-pocket maximums (16 percent)
  • Increased office visit co-payments (12 percent)
  • Increased prescription drug co-payments (11 percent)
  • Changed insurance companies (9 percent)
  • Reduced pay raises or bonuses (5 percent)
  • Began wellness program initiatives (5 percent)

Since 1999, the annual single premium has increased by 164 percent (up $3,392), while the family premium increased by 146 percent (up $8,049). From 2011 to 2012, the premium for single coverage on all types of medical plans (HMO, PPO, Indemnity, CDHP) increased by eight percent, while the family premium increased slightly by two percent.

Overall, employee contributions for single medical coverage is 20 percent of the total single medical premium ($1,065 annual). For family coverage, the average Iowa employee contributes 34 percent of the family premium ($4,657 annual). Last year, the contribution level was 18 percent and 33 percent, respectively.

The summary report will be published on our website within the next two weeks.

The above information is just a small fraction of our survey results. To learn more, we invite you to stay in touch by subscribing to our blog.

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