- Healthcare is costly – but costs also vary tremendously based on where you live.
- Workers in some states paid potentially as little as $US4,700 for healthcare in 2017, while costs in several other states topped $US8,000, a report from The Commonwealth Fund found.
- Read on for the 10 most expensive states.
Healthcare in the US is expensive, and the cost is increasing faster than wages are growing.
A report from The Commonwealth Fund paints a picture of just how expensive. It also shows how much costs vary based on where you live.
In 2017, healthcare cost as little as $US4,700 in Hawaii or $US5,500 in Michigan, for example. Meanwhile, costs were much higher in other states, and several topped $US8,000.
The report looked specifically at how much workers could be paying for health insurance coverage and for out-of-pocket costs like medical procedures and prescription drugs.
Researchers Sara Collins and David Radley did this by adding each state’s average premiums, or monthly health insurance fees, with average deductibles, or the amount people may pay for health services before their health insurer starts picking up the tab.
People in the US get health coverage in a variety of ways. This report looked at those who get health insurance through a plan from an employer, which about 50% of people in the US do. Government programs like Medicaid and Medicare are other big sources of health coverage in the country.
The study’s researchers concluded that middle-income families are getting squeezed by rising health costs and stagnating incomes. And though the study didn’t look at lower-income families, they’re affected too, they said.
“People across the United States are not experiencing health care costs equally,” the researchers wrote.
The report relied on data from the “most comprehensive national survey of U.S. employer health plans,” the federal Medical Expenditure Panel Survey-Insurance Component (MEPS-IC), which reached out to more than 40,000 businesses in 2017, and had about 66% respond overall.
Here are the 10 most expensive states:
10. Nebraska: $US7,897.
This figure represents 11.3% of Nebraska’s median income. About 9% of the state’s population is uninsured, according to data from the nonprofit Kaiser Family Foundation.
9. Tennessee: $US7,900.
This represents 13.9% of the median income in Tennessee. Some of the highest potential healthcare costs in the country are focused in the south, the Commonwealth study pointed out. About 9% of the population in Tennessee is uninsured.
8. North Carolina: $US8,015.
North Carolina is one of eight US states where the average potential cost of healthcare topped $US8,000, according to the report. The figure represents 13.8% of the median income in North Carolina, and about 11% of the state population is uninsured.
7. Alaska: $US8,058.
This figure represents 10.4% of the state’s median income. About 14% of Alaska’s population in uninsured.
6. Arizona: $US8,060.
This amount comes to 14.3% of the median income in Arizona. Across the US, health insurance premiums and deductibles represented about 11.7% of income in 2017, making Arizona above the national average. About 10% of the state population is uninsured.
5. Virginia: $US8,104.
This is about 11% of median income in Virginia. Of all the people in the state, about 9% are uninsured.
4. Texas: $US8,239.
This amount is about 13.7% of the state’s median income. About 17% of people in Texas do not have health insurance.
3. Delaware: $US8,279.
This represents about 13.7% of median income in Delaware. Around 6% of people in Delaware are uninsured.
2. South Dakota: $US8,286.
This represents about 12% of the median income in the state. About 9% of the state’s population is uninsured.
1. New Hampshire: $US8,289.
Though people in the state pay more each year for health insurance and deductibles, New Hampshire also has the highest median income in the country, or about $US75,000 a year, the Commonwealth researchers noted. About 6% of people in the state are uninsured.
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