For many workers, health insurance is no longer what it once was. Health care costs borne by employees in the form of deductibles and coinsurance rose at a far faster rate than what employer-sponsored insurers paid for care between 2006 and 2016, according to the Kaiser Family Foundation. Even Medicare beneficiaries under the program’s current form (which includes private components and out-of-pocket spending) are expected to feel a bigger financial squeeze going forward.
Increase in Out-of-Pocket Spending for Medicare Beneficiaries
Under the current Medicare system, beneficiaries are on the hook for supplemental private insurance and out-of-pocket spending for certain services—and this spending is expected to increase significantly relative to what seniors receive from Social Security by 2030.
Health Care Companies Are in a Healthy Position
Health care isn’t just big business—it’s massive business. Insurance giant UnitedHealth, drug distributor McKesson, and CVS Health (even prior to its acquisition of insurer Aetna) took the fifth, sixth, and seventh spots in the 2018 Fortune 500; other insurers including Aetna and Anthem landed in the top 50.
A version of this article appears in the April 2019 issue of Fortune with the headline “Workers, Seniors Feel the Health Care Crunch.”