Commentary: According to the 2014 Employer Health Benefits Survey, conducted annually by the Kaiser Family Foundation, employer-sponsored health insurance premiums increased 69% over the past 10 years, yet premiums have increased less quickly over the past five years (2009-2014) than the preceding five-year period (2004-2009). In fact, premiums only increased 3% from 2013 to 2014 – but why?

Many factors are at work, but certainly the increased focus on rising health care costs and the passage of the Affordable Care Act renewed interest from health plans and other health care organizations to offer new and innovative plan offerings, such as narrow network products, the creation of the Consumer Operated and Oriented Plan program and provider-owned health plans and the new sales channels for health insurance – including public and private exchanges.

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