The average monthly cost of healthcare coverage nationwide for a single individual with a single-payer, ACA-based plan was $612 in 2019, before applying a tax subsidy, and $143 after applying the tax subsidy. According to the most recent study on ACA plans by eHealth, in 2020, the national average monthly health insurance premium for an ACA plan was $456 for an individual plan and $1152 for a family plan. In 2020, the national average cost of health insurance was $456 per month for an individual and $1,152 for a family. The average annual cost for health insurance in the United States was $7,470 for an individual and $21,342 for a family in July 2020, according to the Kaiser Family Foundation — the cost that employers generally finance about three-quarters of.
The average health insurance cost for an individual receiving healthcare coverage through an employer was $7,040 per year in 2020, according to data collected by the Kaiser Family Foundation. Many state legislatures passed regulations that required employers to contribute at least 50% of employees health care costs, but by 2021, the Kaiser Family Foundation found the average employer contributed 83% of the premiums for individual coverage and 73% for family plans. Another Mercer survey indicates many employers are not increasing the employee cost-sharing; the expectation is that workers will continue to contribute 22 percent of health plans premium costs, which is unchanged in 2021.
The average annual premium for individual coverage was $6,690 in 2017, and employers paid 82 percent.1 Employer contributions are generally different for individual employee coverage versus family coverage. Employees who enroll in Preferred Provider Organization (PPO) coverage paid higher premiums in 2020, with average annual costs averaging $7,880 for single coverage and $22,248 for family coverage. In 2021, average employer health coverage costs were $7,739 per year for single coverage, a 4 percent increase over the prior year, and $22,221 for family coverage, a 4 percent increase over 2020, according to Kaiser Family Foundation research.
Since 2019, average premiums paid by employers to cover individuals have increased by 4%, while those to cover families have increased by 4%. According to the Kaiser Family Foundation, average employer-provided health insurance premiums were $7,470 for individual coverage and $21,342 for family coverage in 2020. For example, the KFF found that families with employer-sponsored health insurance paid an average deductible of $1,644 in 2020. According to the HR consulting firm Willis Towers Watsons Best Practices in Healthcare survey, which was reported by the SHRM, the average employee premium in 2021 for employer-sponsored health insurance was $3,331, compared with $3,269 in 2020.
Key Takeaways In 2021, average monthly premiums across all types of health plans in the United States were slightly less than $500. The monthly premiums of plans in which you are paying a higher share of costs will be lower than those in which you are paying less out-of-pocket. Older adults, or those with medical problems, who would opt for that same lower monthly premium plan will ultimately pay much more. Younger, healthier people, for instance, typically prefer plans that have higher cost-sharing, but lower monthly premiums.
You also might have lower-cost options if your employer offers health benefits, or you qualify for public insurance programs like Medicaid or Medicare, which offer comprehensive plans such as Medicare Advantage at an affordable cost. A gold plan might be right for you if you are willing to pay a little extra every month in premiums in order to have more of your health care costs covered by the insurance than you would with a bronze or silver plan. A Silver plan may be a good choice for you if you can afford to pay slightly higher premiums than you can with a bronze plan in order to have more medical costs paid for by insurance. If you really do have a chronic condition, or you think that you might need to go for health care more often, Peter Kongstvedt suggests looking at a healthcare plan with a slightly higher premium because it is more likely to have lower deductibles and will help you save overall.
If you are generally healthy and at a low risk of developing a serious medical condition, it might be in your best interest to opt for a health care plan with a lower premium, either one offered through an employer or one that you purchase on your own, says Peter Kongstvedt. If you live in a state that offers generous Medicaid coverage, you are likely paying higher premiums on your health care plan than you would if you lived in a state that did not widely offer Medicaid, says Ben Handel. For instance, if your health plan has a $1,000 annual deductible, Peter Kongstvedt adds, you will have to cover any additional medical bills above that. If we are looking at average costs of individual health insurance, a young, single man might pay a premium of $100 or $300, depending on what level of coverage he wants.
As one would expect, younger, healthier adults pay the lowest costs for health coverage, but even for younger adults, coverage costs vary widely depending on location. At the same time, since employees are allowed to pay their healthcare premiums using pretax dollars, their burden may be lighter than for individuals buying coverage for themselves on the federal healthcare insurance marketplace or through their states healthcare exchange. To lower small businesses health care costs, employers may want to select health plans that shift more costs onto employees. Employers typically subsidize the costs of insurance plans that they offer, making it considerably more affordable to their employees, who typically can enroll in an insurance plan through their companies human resources department.
Of course, not every company offers employee healthcare benefits: 44% of companies did not offer coverage to employees in 2020. If you can afford to pay a higher monthly premium in return for lower out-of-pocket costs associated with extended, continuous healthcare, a platinum plan might be a good fit. Average premium contributions by employees on individual and family plans consumed almost 7% of the average American income in 2017, compared with just 5% in 2008. For Americans in the middle income bracket, the combined costs for premiums for employer plans and the potential out-of-pocket costs for meeting deductibles accounted for 11.7 percent of income last year, up from 7.8 percent a decade before.