Accounting for the Slowdown in Employer Health Care Costs
AbstractThe most widely used measure of employer health care costs, the health insurance component of the Employment Cost Index, indicates that cost growth has decelerated since 1989. In recent years employer expenditures per hour worked have even declined in nominal dollars. This paper analyzes the components of changes in employers' health care costs over the 1992-94 and 1987-93 periods. We find that employer costs have decreased primarily as a result of a steady decrease in the fraction of workers with coverage and a large decrease in the rate of growth of insurance premiums. We conclude that the shift to managed care does not appear to be directly responsible for significant cost savings because managed care premiums are almost as high as those for fee-for-service plans, on average. Finally, we note that there is a significant need for improved data collection in this area.
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Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by Princeton University, Department of Economics, Industrial Relations Section. in its series Working Papers with number 749.
Date of creation: Nov 1996
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employer health care costs; health insurance premiums; insurance coverage;
Other versions of this item:
- Alan B. Krueger & Helen Levy, 1997. "Accounting for the Slowdown in Employer Health Care Costs," NBER Working Papers 5891, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- E30 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Prices, Business Fluctuations, and Cycles - - - General (includes Measurement and Data)
- E31 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Prices, Business Fluctuations, and Cycles - - - Price Level; Inflation; Deflation
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- repec:pri:indrel:795 is not listed on IDEAS
- Helen Levy & Thomas DeLeire, 2003. "What Do People Buy When They Don't Buy Health Insurance And What Does that Say about Why They are Uninsured?," NBER Working Papers 9826, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- repec:fth:prinin:416 is not listed on IDEAS
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