Employers expect fewer workers to opt for health coverage as ACA penalties end

October 3, 2018

With deductibles and premiums continuing to rise, employers predict that a chunk of workers will opt to go without health insurance next year when the government drops Affordable Care Act penalties for people who dont buy coverage.

Nine percent of small employers and 24 percent of large firms say they expect fewer employees and dependents to participate in their health plans as a result of the change, according to an annual survey on employer insurance trends by the California-based Kaiser Family Foundation.

The report finds that annual family premiums for employer-sponsored health insurance rose 5 percent to $19,616 this year. General annual deductibles for workers, meanwhile, have increased eight times as fast as wages since 2008.

As long as out-of-pocket costs for deductibles, drugs, surprise bills and more continue to outpace wage growth, people will be frustrated by their medical bills and see health costs as huge pocketbook and political issues, said Drew Altman, the president of the Kaiser Family Foundation, in a statement.

Christopher Snowbeck 612-673-4744 Twitter: @chrissnowbeck

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