Photo: AP

To offset escalating health insurance costs, employers and insurers have been steadily shifting the burden of paying for medical care to the patients themselves. Higher premiums combined with increasing out-of-pocket expenses have been the primary strategies. The result: More people than ever who have health insurance are considered to be uninsured.

That’s the conclusion of an analysis of health plan data by the Commonwealth Fund. Its study, “The Problem of Underinsurance and How Rising Deductibles Will Make It Worse,” is an extraction from a larger piece of research on health insurance in the U.S. The study is based upon data gathered prior to the launch of Obamacare insurance, so the data offers no comment on how reform act insurance may have affected the numbers. Nonetheless, its implications for the general health of Americans are disturbing.

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Dan Cook

Dan Cook is a journalist and communications consultant based in Portland, OR. During his journalism career he has been a reporter and editor for a variety of media companies, including American Lawyer Media, BusinessWeek, Newhouse Newspapers, Knight-Ridder, Time Inc., and Reuters. He specializes in health care and insurance related coverage for BenefitsPRO.

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