Right now, inflation is surging in the United States, with no signs of slowing down anytime soon. In fact, it rose 9.1% in June—even more than expected—and its effects are hitting lower-income Americans the hardest. This is especially true for the cost of health care, which is predicted to rise 6.5% in 2022, according to the PwC Health Research Institute. The result? A worsening health disparity in a health care system that already disadvantages most Americans.

Rising costs of labor and supplies are driving health care pricing increases, a trend that was predicated in 2021 and remains true in 2022. Rather than rethinking their health care offerings, many employers are passing along these rising costs to employees. While those with higher income salaries may be able to better absorb these costs, the same cannot be said for lower-income or middle-class employees. These workers, many of whom are paid hourly, are seeing their paycheck chewed up by rising costs, making it difficult for them to cover basic necessities like food, housing and childcare.

Options are limited for the majority of working Americans who get their health insurance through their employer. High deductible health plans (HDHPs) and preferred provider organization (PPO) plans are hallmarked by high premiums and deductibles, hidden and unpredictable out-of-pocket expenses, minimal support, and lack of transparency to understand utilization and cost drivers. For workers on these types of plans, even the slightest rise in their costs could mean choosing between food and a life-saving prescription medication or much-needed doctor visit. Today, many employees choose to either skip treatment or forgo health care benefits entirely to save money. And those who decide to move forward often find themselves in debt without the means to escape easily.

Complete your profile to continue reading and get FREE access to BenefitsPRO.com, part of your ALM digital membership.

Your access to unlimited BenefitsPRO.com content isn’t changing.
Once you are an ALM digital member, you’ll receive:

  • Critical BenefitsPRO.com information including cutting edge post-reform success strategies, access to educational webcasts and videos, resources from industry leaders, and informative Newsletters.
  • Exclusive discounts on ALM, BenefitsPRO magazine and BenefitsPRO.com events.
  • Access to other award-winning ALM websites including ThinkAdvisor.com and Law.com

Already have an account?

 

BenefitsPRO

Join BenefitsPRO

Don’t miss crucial news and insights you need to navigate the shifting employee benefits industry. Join BenefitsPRO.com now!

  • Unlimited access to BenefitsPRO.com - your roadmap to thriving in a disrupted environment
  • Access to other award-winning ALM websites including ThinkAdvisor.com and Law.com
  • Exclusive discounts on BenefitsPRO.com and ALM events.

Already have an account? Sign In Now
Join BenefitsPRO

Copyright © 2022 ALM Global, LLC. All Rights Reserved.