Good News / Bad News – Medical Plan Costs On The Rise
The National Health Care Trend Survey 2012 is reporting an increase of 9.9 percent for all types of medical plans in the U.S. While this seems to be a high increase, it is actually lower than the 2011 Survey reported. It is actually the first time since 2001 that the Survey has reported a less than 10 percent increase for medical plans, according to SHRM Online. The lower than ‘normal’ increase for medical plans is estimated to be a result of the economic downturn – primarily because employees are foregoing elective medical services as a way to save money.
While this is good news (that the percentage is the lowest it has been in 11 years), this still means an increase in medical plans to some extent. Some employers will foot the bill for the increase; however, the majority of companies will likely split the increase with their employees, or even put the entire increase on the employee. I recommend really looking at your health plan when open enrollment comes up to determine what benefits you have, what you have and have not used in the past, and what you don’t think you will need. This could lead to cost savings for you. You really have to look at the plans to see what is right for you and your family.
Does your employer provide medical plans to employees? If so, do you know how much your employer is paying vs. what you are paying?