The recently released 2013 ADP Annual Health Benefits Report has revealed that older employees are experiencing an ever increasing rate of enrollment in health care benefits while enrollment for younger workers is declining. Such shifts are likely to prompt employers to change their benefits plans in order to lower health care costs in the wake of provisions of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA) that take effect next year. According to the report, half of eligible employees under the age of 30 participate in an employee-sponsored health plan compared to 72 percent of those aged 50 and older.
One of the reasons cited for the lower participation rates of younger workers is the provision that allows dependents up to the age of 26 to be covered under their parents’ health plan. The effect also has the consequence of motivating an increasing number of older workers to participate in employer-sponsored coverage plans. Not to mention the rising number of baby boomers who continue working into their later years.
“The ACA is prompting many organizations to re-examine their benefits strategies as they move into 2014, when the major provisions of the law will go into effect,” Christopher Ryan, study co-author, said. “These strategies and others could have a far-reaching impact on employers and employees.”
Other key findings include:
• Employers increased their contribution share for single-coverage plans while decreasing their share for family coverage.
• Health insurance premiums has leveled off after a 7.6 percent increase between 2010 and 2011 and a 3 percent increase in 2012.
• Health plan costs are dramatically different from state to state with New Jersey hosting the highest and Colorado the lowest.