Employers expect health benefit costs per employee will rise by 4.8% on average in 2014, based on early responses from an annual survey conducted by Mercer. Cost growth slowed to 4.1% in 2012, a 15-year low. The projected increase for 2014, while still relatively low, represents a slight uptick in the rate of growth.
Employer strategies for managing cost growth: More consumer-directed health plans such as health savings accounts, wellness programs and private health care exchanges, for-profit versions of the Affordable Care Act’s state-based insurance exchanges.
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