Skip Navigation Archive: U.S. Department of Health and Human Services U.S. Department of Health and Human Services
Archive: Agency for Healthcare Research Quality
Archival print banner

This information is for reference purposes only. It was current when produced and may now be outdated. Archive material is no longer maintained, and some links may not work. Persons with disabilities having difficulty accessing this information should contact us at: Let us know the nature of the problem, the Web address of what you want, and your contact information.

Please go to for current information.

Premiums for Some Family Plans Cost $20,000 or More

AHRQ News and Numbers, September 2, 2009

AHRQ News and Numbers provides statistical highlights on the use and cost of health services and health insurance in the United States.

One in 10 enrolled workers in Alaska, Indiana, and Minnesota were in health insurance plans costing $20,000 or more—at least $7,000 more than the national average—for employer-based health insurance premiums that covered their families in 2008, according to the latest numbers from the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ).

The Federal agency's analysis of annual employer-based health insurance premiums also found that for the Nation as a whole 10 percent of enrolled workers—about 2 million—had a family plan that cost $17,000 or more. The average annual premium for family plans in 2008 was $12,298.

In addition, AHRQ's analysis of employer-based health insurance premiums in 2008 for private industry found that:

  • The portion of family plan premiums paid by the employee for one in 10 workers nationwide was $6,700 or more, compared with the national average of $3,394.
  • However, 10 percent of workers in Arizona, Colorado, New Mexico, and Washington spent at least $8,100 to get family coverage.
  • Some 3.1 million workers nationwide with single-coverage were in plans with annual premiums totaling $6,200 or more, or at least 41 percent higher than the national average of $4,386.
  • For workers who were enrolled in single-coverage plans, one in 10 paid at least $1,900—more than double the national average of $882.

Health insurance premiums vary within and between the States; the survey provides estimates of the range of premium costs within each State and across the Nation, in addition to average premiums.

AHRQ, which is part of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, works to enhance the quality, safety, efficiency, and effectiveness of health care in the United States. The data in this AHRQ News and Numbers summary are taken from the Insurance Component of the Medical Expenditure Panel Survey, a source of detailed information on employer-sponsored health insurance coverage and costs at the national, State, and metropolitan area levels. For MEPS summary data on employer-based health insurance premiums, go to (PDF File, 62 KB; Plugin Software Help).

For further information, contact Bob Isquith at (301) 427-1539.

Current as of September 2009
Internet Citation: Premiums for Some Family Plans Cost $20,000 or More: AHRQ News and Numbers, September 2, 2009. September 2009. Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, Rockville, MD.


The information on this page is archived and provided for reference purposes only.


AHRQ Advancing Excellence in Health Care