By Matt Weimer, Direc­tor of Strate­gic Solutions
Diver­si­fied Insur­ance Solu­tions, Inc., a UBA Part­ner Firm

TopFiveHealth insur­ance pre­mi­um renew­al rates increased an aver­age of 6.2 per­cent for all plans in 2015, up from the pre­vi­ous year’s 5.6 per­cent increase, accord­ing to UBA’s Health Plan Sur­vey. Small busi­ness­es with few­er than 25 employ­ees, which account for five mil­lion U.S. employ­ers, were hit the hardest—see our break­ing news with the details.

When look­ing at the data region­al­ly, the North­east con­tin­ues to be the region with the high­est aver­age annu­al health insur­ance cost per employ­ee in the coun­try, with four of the five high­est cost states in that region. Plans in the North­east con­tin­ue to cost the most since they typ­i­cal­ly have low or no deductibles, con­tain more state-man­dat­ed ben­e­fits, and fea­ture high­er in-net­work coin­sur­ance, among oth­er fac­tors. But the state with the high­est aver­age annu­al cost per employ­ee is on the oth­er side of the continent.

Alas­ka tops the chart with an aver­age annu­al cost of $12,822 per employ­ee. To put that in per­spec­tive, that is 27.4% above the nation­al aver­age of $9,736 per employ­ee annu­al­ly, and 11.8% above next high­est cost state of Mass­a­chu­setts, at $11,468. Round­ing out the top five are New York at $12,162, New Jer­sey at $12,059 and Ver­mont at $11,920 per employ­ee per year in aver­age annu­al health insur­ance costs.

Aver­age Annu­al Health Care Cost per Employee

High­est Cost States Low­est Cost States
Alas­ka $12,822 Hawaii $7,610
New York 12,162 Arkansas 7,704
New Jer­sey 12,059 New Mex­i­co 7,793
Ver­mont 11,920 Vir­ginia 7,858
Mass­a­chu­setts 11,468 Okla­homa 7,915

On the oth­er end of the spec­trum, Hawaii has the low­est aver­age annu­al cost per employ­ee, which is 24.5% below the nation­al aver­age at $7,610. In con­trast, Alaska’s aver­age annu­al cost is 51.0% high­er than Hawaii. Oth­er states that fare bet­ter than the nation­al aver­age and are among the five best states for health plan costs are Arkansas ($7,704), New Mex­i­co ($7,793), Vir­ginia ($7,858), and Okla­homa ($7,915).

To see your state’s aver­age month­ly pre­mi­ums, down­load our free (no form!) State-by-State chart.

See our news release for health plan cost trends by indus­try—there is some sur­pris­ing news about the finance industry.

To quick­ly bench­mark your plan by indus­try, region, or employ­er size, down­load our Quick Check Bench­mark­ing Tool.

UBA’s Health Plan Sur­vey ana­lyzes a wide range of health care costs trends. To com­pre­hen­sive­ly bench­mark your exact plan to your peers, con­tact a UBA Part­ner near you to run a cus­tom bench­mark­ing report.

For detailed find­ings from our Health Plan Sur­vey, view the Exec­u­tive Sum­ma­ry, or down­load our free high­lights.

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