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Monthly Archives: September 2011

Medical Index Shows Health Care Costs Up By More Than 50 percent

The Milliman Medical Index publication released in May, 2011  indicated that annual health care costs has increased by more than 50 percent since 2002. The publication further indicated that  financing health care is nearly 8% percent more expensive today than it was last year. Of greater concern is the fact that in just under a decade, the health care cost is 50 percent more expensive than what it used to be nine years ago. However, this rate appears to have declined in the recent years with the annual MMI increase rate declining from last year.

Contributions from both employers and their employees were included in this report. Employees have been worst affected as they now pay more than double what they used to pay in 2002. Compared to last year, the MMI has this year increased by nearly $1400.00.  Employee overall contribution to the total cost has also increased over a six-year period to nearly 40% percent up from 37 percent in 2005. In this year’s MMI, outpatient and impatient spending accounted for over 60 percent of the total healthcare costs.

This trend shows an increasing expenditure on health care costs for both the employers and employees although it is the employees who are getting beat up the most.  This year alone, there has been a nearly 10% increase in payroll cuts for settling insurance costs. The employer contribution has, however, dipped in the last two years by an average of 7% percent in 2010. MMI also points out that family healthcare costs differ significantly across the different states. Some areas are above the national average, while others fall below the national average. MMI says an average family of four spends about 15 percent of their total health costs on pharmacy, over 30% as medical fees to physicians, 31 percent on inpatient expenses and  over 15 percent on outpatient bills.

With these increasing costs in family health care costs, families are now striving to get greatest benefits from federal healthcare reforms. MMI researchers, however, say that the healthcare reforms have not yielded much in bringing down healthcare costs. They nevertheless, show that a few provisions of the reform including scrapping lifetime benefit limits and lifting co-payments on preventive care services may be beneficial in reducing family health costs. They assert that the overall family health cost is still high as the benefits of healthcare reforms are insignificant.

On a personal note; although the MMI indicates a 50  increase healthcare costs and a rise in employee contributions – the cost of Health Insurance Premiums have sky-rocketed.  InsureDirect.com now spends 4 times more on HealthCare Insurance than it did just 4 years ago.  We have seen a consistent increase of about 25% until last year.  At out most recent renewal our premium nearly doubled.  Quite frankly; I hate to see what’s in store for 2012.  Only time will tell…..

-Mike

Michael E. Dortch
President &  Managing Agent
InsureDirect.com
Corporate Home Office
618 South Broad Street
Lansdale, Pennsylvania  19446
(800) 807-0762  ext. 602

Billions Of Dollars Lost In Form Of Insurance Claims Due To Errors

 The American Medical Association (AMA) has discovered significant errors in payments of insurance claims according to their latest National Health Insurer Report Card which was  release yearly. In their report, the AMA estimated health insurance carriers pay 20 percent more –about $17 billion –in claims as a result of errors. 2011 has seen the error rate… Continue Reading

Court Shuts Down Christian Stanley Inc.

Chief Executive officer of a California Life Settlement Firm trading as Christian Stanley Inc., reportedly operated a pyramid scheme worth $4.5 million. Details of his expenditure reveal that he used close to $5,000 to register for a dating service, about $21,000 to settle his school loans and splurged a farther $5,000 on fancy shoes. The Securities and… Continue Reading

Ohio Insurance Bureau Makes Proposals For A Job Creation Plan

Although our nations economy is at historic lows and joblessness is at 9%; more jobs could be available in Ohio if a plan proposed by the Ohio Bureau of Worker’s Compensation sees the light of the day. This fiscal growth program seeks to present new Ohio companies with workers’ compensation insurance premium discounts amounting to 50 percent or more. The plan dubbed “Grow… Continue Reading

Top Grades For Ohio Insurance Environment

According to Ohio Lieutenant Governor and Director of the Department of Insurance Mary Taylor, Ohio has earned a top grade for its property and casualty insurance regulatory environment courtesy of the Heartland Institute based on its 2011 report. Property & Casualty Insurance Products encompass many types of insurance products such as Car Insurance, Commercial Auto Insurance… Continue Reading

Three Dates Set For PA’s Health Exchange Program Discussions

Three forums are set to be held in August by the Pennsylvania Insurance Department in a bid to get public opinion on health insurance exchanges. Different locations have been set across the state where the forums will take place. The first one slated for Aug 9 at the Doubletree Hotel Pittsburgh Monroeville Convention Center in downtown Monroeville, Pa. This… Continue Reading

New Homeowners Protection Class Ratings in Florida Cause an Insurance Coverage Dilemma

The Insurance Service Office of  Florida’sInsurance Industry has created new Protection Class Homeowners Ratings for  those high risk counties in the state of Florida.  The Florida Insurance Rating Agency which provides the state’s Insurance Carriers with vital claims statistics, underwriting and actuarial data for setting  an insurance company’s policy rates, has made it difficult for those rural Florida residents to acquire Homeowners Insurance Coverage.… Continue Reading

Irene May Hurt State Run Insurance

According to the Insurance Information Institute, state-run insurance providers may not have adequate financial ability to cover Hurricane Irene losses. However, private insurers have sufficient resources to pay claims attributed to the storm.  State run insurers stand to suffer due to several factors; including their operations in the residual market where they offer premium rates that… Continue Reading

Florida Insurers Find New Way Of Handling Sinkhole Fraud

Sinkhole payment abuse has caused a huge increase in insurance premiums for homeowner insurance policies in Florida.  This type of fraud has now forced insurance companies in Florida to come up with better ways of addressing this problem and reduce losses. A spokesman for a florida based homeowners insurance carrier recently stated; “not only is rising premiums a consequence of sinkhole fraud, but there is also… Continue Reading

Connecticut To Waive Storm Deductibles Resulting From Irene

Many InsureDirect.com customers throughout Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Delaware and Maryland and parts of Ohio experienced losses from Hurricane Irene. It seems like no one was immune regardless if you lost your car, home, motorcycle or boat to wind or flooding.  My family home I lost its power for four days and many of my neighbors in the Bucks County Area of Pennsylvania experienced severe… Continue Reading