White House: Report — The burden of health insurance premium increases on Wisconsin families

Average Wisconsin family premium growth is 108 percent, compared to just 30 percent wage growth

WASHINGTON – Today, speaking to a group of State Insurance Commissioners, Vice President Biden highlighted a new White House report documenting the burden of health insurance premium increases on Wisconsin families.

Health insurance premiums for American families continue to skyrocket. In the past year, the national average annual family premium for employer-sponsored health insurance rose to $13,375 in 2009 – a shocking 5.5 percent increase during a recession when inflation actually fell by 0.7 percent.

“The status quo of rising premiums is simply unsustainable,” said Vice President Biden, “for families, for businesses, for state budgets, and for our national economy.”

In every state, premiums have increased far faster than wages and are consuming increased portions of family budgets. The White House’s analysis found that families’ premiums in Wisconsin went up 108 percent, outpacing wage growth of just 30 percent.

“The State Insurance Commissioners understand firsthand the health care crisis – and are fighting every day to combat it and reduce unjustified premium increases,” Vice President Biden said. “But these numbers are just one more piece of evidence that the need for nationwide reform is urgent.”

To read the full White House report, please click here: http://www.whitehouse.gov/assets/documents/Health_Insurance_Premium_Report.pdf.