Sep 25, 2019

Employer health plans are getting pricier and skimpier

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Adapted from the Kaiser Family Foundation; Chart: Axios Visuals

The average cost of family health insurance offered by companies climbed 5% this year, exceeding $20,000 for the first time, according to the newest annual survey of employer health benefits from the Kaiser Family Foundation.

The bottom line: Employer health coverage continues to get more expensive and less comprehensive for workers — all coming at the expense of people's paychecks.

By the numbers: KFF's survey, considered to be a gold standard for data on employer-based health plans, sampled more than 2,000 different companies.

  • The average family plan premium in 2019 totaled $20,576. Employers paid for 71% of that cost, down slightly from 72% in 2018.
  • The average premium for single workers was $7,188. Employers covered 83% of that cost, up slightly from 81% in 2018.

The intrigue: Workers aren't just paying more in monthly premiums. Employers continue to raise the average deductibles, which means more workers are paying for more of their care out of pocket later into the year.

  • Workers' earnings rose 26% from 2009 to 2019. Deductibles soared 162% in the same time span.

The big picture: Many Democratic candidates have advocated for preserving employer-based health insurance despite the rising costs, higher deductibles and large tax breaks.

Go deeper: Millions of workers lose or change health plans every year

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Updates: George Floyd protests nationwide

Police officers wearing riot gear push back demonstrators outside of the White House on Monday. Photo: Jose Luis Magana/AFP via Getty Images

Protests over the death of George Floyd and other police-related killings of black people continued for a seventh day across the U.S., with President Trump threatening on Monday to deploy the military if the unrest continues.

The latest: Four police officers were struck by gunfire while standing near a line in St Louis on Monday after a peaceful demonstration, Police Chief John Hayden said early Tuesday. They were all taken to hospital with non-life threatening injuries. He said a small group of people had thrown rocks and fireworks at police officers.

Updated 1 hour ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

  1. Global: Total confirmed cases as of 3 a.m. ET: 6,273,402 — Total deaths: 375,683 — Total recoveries — 2,697,873Map.
  2. U.S.: Total confirmed cases as of 3 a.m. ET: 1,811,277 — Total deaths: 105,147 — Total recoveries: 458,231 — Total tested: 17,340,682Map.
  3. Public health: Nearly 26,000 coronavirus deaths in nursing homes have been reported to federal health officials —Coronavirus looms over George Floyd protests across the country.
  4. Federal government: Trump lashes out at governors, calls for National Guard to "dominate" streets.
  5. World: Former FDA commissioner says "this is not the time" to cut ties with WHO.
  6. 🎧 Podcast: The virus didn't go away.
Updated 2 hours ago - Politics & Policy

St. John's clergy: Trump used church as prop, Bible as symbol of division

Photo: Brendan Smialowski/AFP via Getty Images

Clergy of the historic St. John's Episcopal Church expressed furor and confusion over President Trump's visit on Monday, which he claimed was to honor the establishment after George Floyd protestors sparked a small fire on the property Sunday night.

The big picture: Park rangers and military police deployed tear gas and physical force to disperse peaceful protestors from Lafayette Park, which surrounds the White House, so Trump could walk to "pay respects" to the church — and a St. John's rector on the scene revealed in a Facebook post that she was left "coughing" from the tear gas.