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Study finds ACA slowed rise in employer-sponsored premiums

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A new Commonwealth Fund study finds that, following implementation of the Affordable Care Act, premiums for employer-sponsored insurance in 31 states grew more slowly than in previous years.

A new Commonwealth Fund study finds that, following implementation of the Affordable Care Act (ACA), premiums for employer-sponsored insurance in 31 states grew more slowly than in previous years.

But more costs were also shifted to employees in the form of premiums and deductibles, and by 2013, premium costs ate up more than 20% of income in 37 states, according to the study.

View The Commonwealth Fund’s state-by-state interactive map of changes in employer-sponsored health insurance premiums and deductibles.

Premium increases from 2010 to 2013 grew three times faster than income, while per-person deductibles at least doubled in all but six states and the District of Columbia.

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Noting that premiums in the ACA’s federal marketplace were also slower than expected, the study says the main reason for the slowdown in premium growth is a decline in healthcare spending since 2009.

Based on an analysis of claims data, the study found that families and employees had used fewer services between 2009 and 2014, including hospital care and elective surgery.

Quality initiates implemented as a part of the ACA, including alterative models of care delivery and efforts to reduce waste and duplication, might also be contributing to the slowdown in premium growth, notes the study.

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