Group medical benefits renewal rates continued to increase in the U.S. market between June and October, but brokers say clients are not planning to cut coverage altogether, according to the November Employee Benefits Market Survey by The Council of Insurance Agents & Brokers.

"Members still saw premium increases for their clients, which is frustrating for them," said Ken A. Crerar, council president. "There is no question that the services of brokers have been in high demand since the passage of health care reform, and many are concerned about the lack of flexibility among carriers. There is a lot of confusion due to the slow or prolonged implementation schedule."

According to the survey, small, medium and large employers continued to experience group medical coverage rate increases and have started shifting some costs to employees through higher deductibles and co-pays and increased employee shares of premium costs.

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