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California Employer Health Benefits: Prices Up, Coverage Down

March 13, 2017

Since 2000, the percentage of employers offering health benefits has declined in California and nationwide, although coverage rates among offering firms have remained stable. Only 55% of California firms reported providing health insurance to employees in 2016, down from 69% in 2000. Implementation of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) in 2014 does not appear to have impacted the overall trend in employer offer rates. Nineteen percent of California firms reported that they increased cost sharing in the past year, and 27% of firms reported that they were very or somewhat likely to increase employees' premium contribution in the next year. The prevalence of plans with large deductibles also continues to increase.

Employer Health Benefits 2016 Annual Survey

September 14, 2016

This annual survey of employers provides a detailed look at trends in employer-sponsored health coverage including premiums, employee contributions, cost-sharing provisions, and employer opinions. The 2016 survey included almost 1,900 interviews with non-federal public and private firms.Annual premiums for employer-sponsored family health coverage reached $18,142 this year, up 3 percent from last year, with workers on average paying $5,277 towards the cost of their coverage, according to the Kaiser Family Foundation/Health Research & Education Trust 2016 Employer Health Benefits Survey. The 2016 survey includes information on the use of incentives for employer wellness programs, plan cost-sharing as well as firm offer rate. Survey results are released here in a variety of ways, including a full report with downloadable tables on a variety of topics, summary of findings, and an article published in the journal Health Affairs.

Consumer Cost-Sharing in Marketplace vs. Employer Health Insurance Plans, 2015

December 21, 2015

Using data from 49 states and Washington, D.C., we analyzed changes in costsharing under health plans offered to individuals and families through state and federal exchanges from 2014 to 2015. We examined eight vehicles for cost-sharing, including deductibles, copayments, coinsurance, and out-of-pocket limits, and compared findings with cost-sharing under employer-based insurance. We found cost-sharing under marketplace plans remained essentially unchanged from 2014 to 2015. Stable premiums during that period do not reflect greater costs borne by enrollees. Further, 56 percent of enrollees in marketplace plans attained cost-sharing reductions in 2015. However, for people without cost-sharing reductions, average copayments, deductibles, and out-of-pocket limits under catastrophic, bronze, and silver plans are considerably higher than under employerbased plans on average, while cost-sharing under gold plans is similar employer-based plans on average. Marketplace plans are far more likely than employer-based plans to require enrollees to meet deductibles before they receive coverage for prescription drugs.

Small Employer Perspectives On The Affordable Care Act's Premiums, SHOP Exchanges, And Self-Insurance

October 28, 2013

Beginning January 1, 2014, small businesses having no more than fifty full-time-equivalent workers will be able to obtain healthinsurance for their employees through Small Business Health OptionsProgram (SHOP) exchanges in every state. Although the Affordable Care Act intended the exchanges to make the purchasing of insurance moreattractive and affordable to small businesses, it is not yet known how they will respond to the exchanges. Based on a telephone survey of 604 randomly selected private firms having 3 -- 50 employees, we found that both firms that offered health coverage and those that did not rated most features of SHOP exchanges highly but were also very price sensitive.More than 92 percent of nonoffering small firms said that if they were to offer coverage, it would be "very" or "somewhat" important to them that premium costs be less than they are today. Eighty percent of offering firms use brokers who commonly perform functions of benefit managers -- functions that the SHOP exchanges may assume. Twenty-six percent of firms using brokers reported discussing self-insuring with their brokers. An increase in the number of self-insured small employers could pose a threat to SHOP exchanges and other small-group insurance reforms.

Decade of Decline: A Survey of Employer Health Insurance Coverage in New York State

November 16, 2010

Presents findings from a survey of New York-based firms on trends in employer-sponsored coverage during the recession, including offer rates, eligibility, take-up, and coverage rates; premiums; employer and employee costs; and support for reform measures.

Employer Health Benefits 2008 Annual Survey

December 1, 2008

Presents annual survey data on the health plans employers offer, including plan types, providers, premiums, coverage, eligibility, enrollment patterns, employee cost-sharing, prescription drug benefits, retiree benefits, and employer opinions.

Retiree Health Benefits After Medicare Part D: A Snapshot of Prescription Drug Coverage

September 16, 2008

Based on employer surveys, assesses how the introduction of the Medicare Part D prescription drug benefit affected employer-based retiree, drug, and other health coverage.

The Commonwealth Fund/National Opinion Research Center Survey of Retiree Health Benefits, 2005: A Chartbook

July 19, 2007

Analyzes the state of retiree health benefits, based on a survey of public and private employers. Looks at the Medicare Part D Prescription Drug Benefit, Governmental Accounting Standards Board regulations, and past and future changes to retiree benefits.