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Although greater health care utilization is expected in 2022, the cost of goods and services will be a stronger driver of cost trends. (Photo: Shutterstock)

Although COVID-19’s disruption of health-care-as-usual created a historic pause in rising costs, a new report predicts cost trends will continue their upward trajectory in 2022. However, the industry remains in flux, the report added, because factors such as virtual care and reduced use of emergency rooms (ERs) could reshape how health care is delivered in the U.S.

The 2022 Health Plan Cost Trend Survey was released by Segal, a benefits and HR consulting firm that has tracked cost trends in health insurance for 25 years. It found that 2020 marked the first time in the report’s history that health care cost trends decreased.

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