Mellon Health Cost Increases Projections for Second Half of 2004 Down Slightly

September 15, 2004 ( - In a new survey by Mellon Human Resources & Investor Solution, costs for the latter half of 2004 for medical care costs are expected to rise between 8% and 14.9%.

The National Health Care Trend Survey summarizes the trend factors by 93 HMOs, Blue Cross/Blue Shield plans, health insurers and other plan administrators to project the rate of increase in employers’ medical, dental, prescription drug and vision plans. The numbers, however, are down from projections from six months ago. Insurers are projecting an average increase of 14.6%, down over half a percent.

Mellon, in a news release, attributes this cost hike to “increased utilization of health services, medical inflation, increases in intensity of services and continued government mandates.”

A copy of the report is available free for Mellon clients; non-clients must pay $100 for a copy (available at 201-553-6400).