MINNEAPOLIS — Significantly more Iowans who get their health insurance through their employers are now on high-deductible plans, according to an annual report from the University of Minnesota.
Elizabeth Lukanen, deputy director of the university’s State Health Access Data Assistance Center, says employers are likely trying to keep premiums low by raising deductibles. Lukanen says, “To control costs, what employers are doing is they’re continuing to offer coverage, but they’re shifting some of those costs to consumers and to their employees.”
The annual report found the number of Iowans on high-deductible plans jumped from 50-percent in 2017 to 57-percent last year. The national average is 49-percent. Lukanen says many Iowans may not understand these plans can be financially risky. “The plan might seem affordable because if you have a higher deductible, you often have a lower premium,” Lukanen says, “but if you have a chronic illness or an unexpected health event, and you don’t have any savings, you can really quickly find yourself in debt.”
The report found the average deductible for a single person rose 288-dollars over the past two years, an increase of more than 15-percent.