Healthcare Costs Now Exceed $20,000 Per Family - Milliman Study

May 15, 2012

A typical American family of four receiving healthcare through an employer-sponsored preferred provider organization (PPO) plan now pays $20,728.  This according to the latest study by Milliman, Inc., a premier global consulting and actuarial firm.  While the 6.9% increase over 2011 is the lowest rate of increase in the ten years of this study, the $1,335 increase surpasses last year’s record of $1,319.

The average rate of increase this year dips below 7% for the first time since we began analyzing these costs, but the total dollar increase is still the highest we have seen,” said Lorraine Mayne, principal and consulting actuary with the Salt Lake City office of Milliman. “This helps illustrate the challenge of controlling healthcare costs.  When the total cost is already so high, even a slower rate of growth has a serious impact on family budgets.”

The release of this study falls during an uncertain time for American healthcare, with the nation awaiting the outcome of the US Supreme Court’s decision on the future of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA).  To date, PPACA has only a limited effect on healthcare costs for families covered by an employer-sponsored PPO plan.  Read more….

Editor’s Note:  Regardless of the Supreme Court’s decision on the PPACA, the act primarily expanded access to health care for the uninsured and does not address cost. In fact, expanding benefits with coverage mandates and providing guaranteed acceptance for insurance regardless of current health conditions by 2014 will likely cause medical insurance pricing to increase dramatically over current levels in the years to come. 

Source: Milliman, News Release - May 15, 2012

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