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Prospects for Retiree Health Benefits as Medicare Drug Coverage Begins – Report

Prospects for Retiree Health Benefits as Medicare Drug Coverage Begins:Findings from the Kaiser/Hewitt 2005 Survey on Retiree Health Benefits – ReportThis report assesses how large businesses that provide retiree health benefits to their workers are responding to the new Medicare drug benefit in 2006, their plans for the future, and…

All Eyes on the Supreme Court: More than Birth Control at Stake

On March 25th, the Supreme Court will hear two cases brought by for-profit corporations challenging the ACA’s contraceptive coverage rule on religious grounds. These two corporations are Hobby Lobby, a national chain of craft stores owned by a Christian family and Conestoga Wood Specialties, a cabinet manufacturer, owned by a Mennonite family. Beyond the impact on the ACA and contraceptive coverage, the Court’s decision may have implications for religious rights of employers and employees, as well as corporate and civil rights laws. This brief examines three fundamental questions raised by some of the 84 amicus briefs that have been submitted to the Court.

Employer-Sponsored Family Health Premiums Rise a Modest 4 Percent in 2013, National Benchmark Employer Survey Finds

Annual premiums for employer-sponsored family health coverage reached $16,351 this year, up 4 percent from last year, with workers on average paying $4,565 toward the cost of their coverage, according to the Kaiser Family Foundation/Health Research & Educational Trust (HRET) 2013 Employer Health Benefits Survey. This year’s rise in premiums remains moderate by historical standards. The 15th annual Kaiser/HRET survey of more than 2,000 small and large employers provides a detailed picture of the status and trends in employer-sponsored health insurance costs and coverage.

Health Insurance Coverage in 2013: Gains in Public Coverage Continue to Offset Loss of Private Insurance

The recession accelerated the long-standing decline in employer-sponsored health insurance and through 2013 most of the recovery in the uninsured rate was due to increased enrollment in public insurance, primarily Medicaid and the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP). With the exception of young adults ages 19 to 25, who are able to remain on their parents’ health plan until age 26 under the ACA, ESI coverage rates for adults and children continued to decrease between 2010 and 2013.

Harvard and Growth in Health Care Cost Sharing

In this column for The Wall Street Journal’s Think Tank, Drew Altman explains why recent discussion of Harvard University’s introduction of new health insurance cost sharing measures amounted to “making a mountain out of a mole hill”.

Tax Subsidies for Private Health Insurance

This brief describes the different forms of tax assistance for private health insurance, including subsidies offered through the Affordable Care Act’s marketplaces and benefits for people who are self-employed or who have employer-based coverage. The brief also provides examples of how the subsidies work and how the amounts may differ by income and type of coverage.

Consumer Assets and Patient Cost Sharing

Higher cost sharing in private insurance has been credited with helping to slow the growth of health care costs in recent years. For families with low incomes or moderate incomes, however, high deductibles, out-of-pocket limits and other cost sharing can be a potential barrier to care and may lead these families to significant financial difficulties. This issue brief uses information from the Federal Reserve Board’s 2013 Survey of Consumer Finances to look at how household resources match up against potential cost-sharing requirements for plans offered by employers or available in the individual market, including in the Affordable Care Act marketplaces.

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Filling the need for trusted information on national health issues, the Kaiser Family Foundation is a nonprofit organization based in Menlo Park, California.