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Small Business Employee Benefits and HR Blog

Average Health Insurance Costs for 2017

An analysis of individual and family health insurance policies availableAffordable Care Act Policy Costs Up in 2017 in 2017 reveals that costs have increased across the board from 2016.

eHealth, the nation’s largest private online health insurance exchange, released its latest Health Insurance Price Index report on January 13. It looked at the average health insurance premium cost for individual and family policies during the first two months of this year's open enrollment period.

So how much is health insurance costing in 2017? We’ve broken down the average health insurance cost for both individual and family plans.

Average Health Insurance Cost for Individuals

  • Average individual premium (without subsidies)—$393, which is 22 percent higher than the average premium of $321 for 2016 open enrollment.
  • Average annual deductible for individual policies—$4,328, which is a 1 percent decrease since 2016.

The eHealth report also broke down the average monthly premium cost for individuals by metal level as follows:

  • Catastrophic plans: $174
  • Bronze plans: $388
  • Silver plans: $428
  • Gold plans: $507
  • Platinum plans: $583

Additionally, the report analyzed the average monthly premium cost for individuals by age:

  • Under 18: $187
  • Age 18–24: $219
  • Age 25–34: $288
  • Age 35–44: $364
  • Age 45–54: $482
  • Age 55–64: $701

Average Health Insurance Cost for Families

  • Average family premium (without subsidies)—$1,021, which is 23 percent higher than the average premium of $833 for 2016 open enrollment.
  • Average annual deductible for families—$8,352, which is a 5 percent increase since 2016.

Health Insurance Shopping Trends

The report also examined what types of policies people purchased during the first two months of the 2017 open enrollment period. Key takeaways from the report include:

  • Bronze and Silver were the most popular plans, with 44 percent of shoppers choosing Bronze and 34 percent opting for Silver.
  • At 51 percent, Health Maintenance Organization (HMO)–style plans remain the most popular.
  • Health savings account (HSA)–eligible plans accounted for 25 percent of all plans consumers selected.

Conclusion

Industry experts have identified a number of factors behind the rising cost of health insurance policies. Major insurers, including UnitedHealth and Aetna, have withdrawn from the ACA marketplaces, resulting in fewer choices for consumers. The cost of medical care and prescriptions has also climbed in recent years, causing higher premiums.

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Do you think the average health insurance cost will continue to increase? Share your thoughts in the comments.

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