Double-Digit Medical Plan Cost Increases to Continue in 2011

September 14, 2010 ( - Medical plan costs are forecasted to increase at double-digit rates in the next 12 months, according to Aon Consulting’s 2010 Health Care Trend Survey.

Aon surveyed more than 60 health care insurers representing more than 100 million insured individuals and found that health care costs are projected to increase by 10.5% for HMOs, 10.6% for POS plans, 10.7% for PPOs, and 11% for consumer-driven health (CDH) plans.  These findings are slightly higher than a year ago when HMO increases were 10.4%, POS plans were 10.4%, PPO increases were 10.7%, and CDH plan increases were 10.5%, an Aon news release said.  

During the next 12 months, the prescription drug cost trend is expected to be 8.4%, compared to 9.3% in the spring of 2009. The specialty pharmacy trend rate is projected to be 14%, versus 13.2% a year ago.   

Aon also found health care rates for retirees over the age of 65 are projected to be 7.5% for Medicare Supplement plans and 6.7% for Medicare Advantage plans – up from 6.6% and down from 7.3%, respectively, from the spring of 2009.  

Aon Consulting said the health care reform law is expected to add 2% to 5% to the medical trend over the next three years.