It’s open enrollment!
You know, that one month in the year when you get to swap out the health plan you may have wrongly chosen last year before you knew better?
Sadly, for many workers, the choices are shrinking. As reported in this NYT story a couple days ago a growing number of companies are offering *only* high deductible health plans….take it – or leav it. And that includes big companies, like Nissan and Delta Airlines.
The reason: skyrocketing premiums, and the underlying fast pace of health care inflation is making health coverage unaffordable for businesses to offer as well, according to this WSJ article. So businesses are trying to tamp down their costs by passing it along to their workers.
Some workers may find themselves *completely* without the option of health insurance. In that case, they’re at the mercy of the individual insurance market. If they’re not turned down for “pre-existing conditions” like earaches, or something, then workers may be able to find coverage. But there, the average monthly premium for an individual was $158 with a deductible of $1,972, according to a study of 227,000 policies purchased through www.ehealthinsurance.com. For families, the figure is worse — $366 for a $2,610 deductible.