The study by the Kaiser Family Foundation and the Health Research and Educational Trust (HRET) also revealed that smaller businesses – those employing between three and 200 workers – were hardest hit.
Premiums at these firms increased by 11.3% on average – with 30% of these smaller firms experiencing premium hikes of over 15%.
In 2001, monthly premiums in California averaged $197 for single coverage and $521 for family coverage. In the US as a whole, single coverage cost $221 on average, and family coverage was $588.
Employee contributions in California are also lower than the national average. In 2001, California’s workers:
- contributed $21 per month on average for single coverage
- paid $114 for family coverage in 2001.
- workers paid $30 on average per month for a single policy
- while family policies cost $150.
While employee contributions to their health insurance remained level between 2000 and 2001, the holiday may be over.
Some 35% of small employers are likely to increase the amount that employees pay for health insurance as are two-thirds of larger employers.