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September 6, 2017

More CT employees in high-deductible plans and paying more for them

More Connecticut employees were enrolled in high-deductible health health plans through an employer last year, 59.3 percent, versus 50.5 percent in 2015, according to a new analysis of the Medical Expenditure Panel Survey Insurance Component prepared by researchers at the University of Minnesota’s State Health Access Data Assistance Center. Only Kentucky and New Hampshire had higher percentages of employees in high-deductible plans.

A high-deductible health plan included a minimum annual deductible of $1,300 for an individual and $2,600 for a family in 2016.

The report, with funding from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, found the number of Americans enrolled in high-deductible plans increased 3.2 percentage points last year. The report found that growth in premium prices in employer plans slowed in recent years, but was offset by growth in deductibles.

Nationally, the average deductible was $1,696 for single plans, up from $1,541 in 2015. In Connecticut, the same deductible was $1,959, up from $1,733 in 2015, the report said.

The average annual premium for single coverage in Connecticut was $6,545, up from $6,478 in 2015. The average employee share of that coverage was 22.9 percent, down from 25.5 percent, the report said.

“High-deductible health plans are increasingly becoming the norm in commercial insurance, and there is every reason to expect this trend to continue,” said Katherine Hempstead, senior adviser at the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. “Deductibles rose considerably faster than premiums, and the share of health care spending made directly by consumers will continue to grow.”

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