From the Asbury Park Press:
With rising health care costs outpacing incomes in New Jersey, a healthcare advocacy group warned Monday that increasing numbers of state residents are unable to afford adequate medical care.
“Working families are paying more and more and are receiving less and less,” said Ron Pollack, executive director of Families USA. “More and more people in New Jersey are joining the ranks of the uninsured and the underinsured.”
Health-insurance premiums for New Jersey families covered through an employer rose about 80 percent over the past six years, about 5.5 times as much as income grew, according to the group.
Premiums for individuals getting health insurance through their jobs also rose sharply, jumping 50 percent from 2000 to 2006, more than three times the rate at which earnings increased, according to the advocacy group, which supports universal health care.
“If this troubling trend continues, the health care affordability crisis in New Jersey will get worse and worse,” Pollack told reporters during a teleconference.