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Survey: Rising Health Rates Hit Home

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Insurance industry employers’ own health coverage costs are about 9.7% higher this year than they were in 2010.

Compdata Surveys, Olathe, Kan., a unit of Dolan Technologies Corp., has based that figure on results from a survey of 210 insurance companies, insurance brokerage firms and other insurance industry employers at about 1,750 locations.

Compdata asked survey participants about pay levels and benefits packages.

About 70% of the participating companies said they pay more than $9,600 per year for coverage for an employer who opts for family coverage.

The annual cost of the typical employee-only plan ranges from $2,400 to $7,200.

Some health insurers have promoted the use of high-deductible health plans, with or without a health savings account or other personal health account, as a strategy for reducing premium costs.

About 67% of the companies Compdata surveyed said they have tried to manage costs by increasing the employee portion of the premium, and 46% said they have increased deductible levels.

About 42% now offer some kind of high-deductible health plan, up from 29% in 2009, Compdata says.

About 83% offered preferred provider organization plans; just 25% offer health maintenance organization plans.

Earlier, Compdata reported that insurance industry employers have increased pay an average of about 2.8% this year. The average increase is about the same as in 2010, the company says.

“There appears to be a level of cautious optimism within the industry in regard to the economy,” Amy Kaminski, the company’s marketing director, says in a statement about the survey results.

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