Employer-based health insurance has increased 4% from a year ago, according to the Kaiser Family Foundation (KFF).
The 2021 benchmark KFF Employer Health Benefits Survey conducted by the Foundation showed annual premiums had risen to $22,200 for families and $7,700 for individuals.
"The average single and family premiums increased 4% over the past year," according to the summary accompanying the report. "During this period, workers' wages increased 5% and inflation increased 1.9%. The average premium for family coverage has increased 22% over the last five years and 47% over the last ten years."
The increase in premiums was the same as 2020 but still outpaced inflation. Although the gap between rising workers' wages and premium costs disappeared this year, an analysis of the survey by Axios pointed out that the higher premiums still offset the wage gains.
KFF's summary also explored "changes employers and health plans made to address potential issues and uncertainties arising from the [COVID-19] pandemic."
However, they found little to write home about.
"Overall market characteristics changed little," the summary said. "Premiums continued on a modest growth trend, the share of people offered coverage at their work and the share of those covered by their jobs remained unchanged, as did the average deductible and other cost-sharing levels."
The most popular way for health insurance providers to mitigate the effects of the pandemic was to increase telemedicine services, Kaiser Health News (KHN) said about the survey.
"In 2021, 95% of employers offered at least some health care services through telemedicine, compared with 85% last year. These were often video appointments, but a growing number of companies allowed telemedicine visits by telephone or other communication modes," the survey-affiliated news organization reported.
Roughly 155 million Americans get their health coverage from an employer-based plan and will be directly affected by the premium increase.
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