WASHINGTON, Sept. 3 (UPI) -- Premiums paid by employees in the United States for their companies' health plans increased by 14 percent this year, a report released Thursday said.
The Kaiser Family Foundation, in its survey, said on average workers with family coverage are paying $500 more, or about $4,000 in average annual premiums, The New York Times reported. Employers, hit by the recession and rising healthcare costs, have been increasing deductibles and co-payments and trimming plans, and pushing premium increases onto employees.
At the same time, the percentage of companies with health plans increased to 69 percent from 60 percent, the report said. Kaiser suggested more firms without health insurance benefits may have gone out of business, the Los Angeles Times reported.
"We were all so focused on the reform debate that I think we took our eyes off the fact that what we call heath insurance in this country is changing," said Drew Altman, the foundation president. "What workers get looks less and less like the comprehensive coverage their parents had."