Plan Changes May Mitigate Rising Health Care Costs

September 11, 2012 ( - A preview of Mercer’s annual health benefits survey forecasts employers’ health care costs will increase in 2013.

Early responses to the survey indicate an average increase of 8% in 2013 – compared with increases of just 6.1% in 2011 and 5.7% in 2012 – if employers do not make any changes to their plans. After changes, the survey indicates costs will rise by 6.5%.

Nearly six out of 10 employers (58%) reported planning to shift more expenses to employees in 2013 in order to minimize cost increases.

Among small employers – those with under 500 employees – 16% intend to terminate their plans when the health care reforms are implemented, compared with only 6% of larger employers.

These results are based on the early responses of roughly 2,000 employers received by Mercer through September 4. 


Kristen Heinzinger