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In 2011, Alaska had the highest average annual cost per employee in the U.S. for employer-sponsored health plan coverage, at $11,926. Mississippi had the lowest per employee cost, at $6,282, according to United Benefit Advisors’ (UBA)
2011 UBA Health Plan Survey, a benchmarking survey of 16,421 plans from 10,744 employers. The average annual cost for individual employee coverage in all plans nationally in 2011, according to UBA, was $8,688.
“These are important benchmarks for employers looking to expand into various states and the potential impact on overall human resource costs," said Bill Stafford, vice president for member services at UBA, an alliance of more than 140 independent benefit advisory firms. "This may also have a bearing on the various future policies states adopt in responding to health care reform in their local market,” he added.
Aside from Alaska, all states with an average annual cost per employee in excess of $10,500 are in the Northeast:
The five most expensive states for employer-provided health coverage in 2011:
Average Annual Cost per Employee
2011 UBA Health Plan Survey.
In 2011, Mississippi became the least expensive state for employer-provided coverage, replacing Kentucky, the lowest reported state in UBA's 2010 survey.
The five least expensive states for employer-provided health coverage in 2011:
The survey was conducted from Oct. 4, 2010, to June 3, 2011, through the efforts of UBA member firms. The state-specific findings were released in October 2011.
In 2012, the average cost of health care coverage per employee in the U.S. is projected to surpass the $10,000 mark for the first time, according to HR consultancy Aon Hewitt (see the
SHRM Online article "Per Employee Health Coverage to Cross $10,000 Threshold").
is an online editor/manager for SHRM.
Employers Accelerate Efforts to Control Health Costs,
SHRM Online Benefits Discipline, November 2011
Per Employee Health Coverage to Cross $10,000 Threshold,
SHRM Online Benefits Discipline, October 2011
Average Family Health Premiums Top $15,000 in 2011,
SHRM Online Benefits Discipline, September 2011
Large U.S. Employers Revamping Health Benefits for 2012,
SHRMOnline Benefits Discipline, August 2011
SHRM Online Health Care Reform Resource Page
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