Report examines health insurance premium increase trend

Rapidly rising health insurance costs have strained U.S. families and employers in recent years, according to a report by the Commonwealth Fund.

The analysis finds that premiums for businesses and their employees increased 41 percent across states from 2003 to 2009, while per-person deductibles jumped 77 percent. If these trends continue at the rate prior to enactment of the Affordable Care Act, the average premium for family coverage will rise 79 percent by 2020, to more than $23,000.

The authors conclude that if healthcare reform succeeds in slowing premium growth by 1 percentage point annually in all states, by 2020 employers and families together will save $2,323 annually for family coverage, compared with projected trends.

(Source: The Commonwealth Fund, http://www.commonwealthfund.org, December 2, 2010)