High-deductible plan enrollment shrinks for 1st time since 2013

Fewer workers were enrolled in high-deductible plans in 2022 than in 2021, the first time enrollment has dipped since 2013, according to an analysis from ValuePenguin published Jan. 22. 

In 2022, 53.6% of private-sector employees were enrolled in high-deductible plans, down from 55.7% in 2021. 2022 was the first time the proportion of employees in these plans has decreased since 2013, when 30.3% of private-sector employees were enrolled in the plans, according to ValuePenguin. 

In 2022, South Dakota had the highest share of employees enrolled in high-deductible plans, with 72.2% of private sector employees enrolled. Hawaii had the lowest share at 21.8%. Hawaii had one of the fastest growth rates for high deductible plans, with the number of employees enrolled jumping by more than 10% in 2022. 

Fewer employers are offering high-deductible plans as the only option for employees than in 2018, ValuePenguin's report noted. 

Studies have linked the plans, which typically have lower premiums than HMO or PPO options and can be paired with a health savings account to cover out-of-pocket expenses, to delayed cancer screenings, worse diabetes outcomes and increased emergency room expenses.  

An October survey of employers from KFF also found the number of employees in high-deductible plans dropped slightly in 2022. 

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