KHN Morning Briefing

Summaries of health policy coverage from major news organizations

Companies Continue To Shed Retiree Health Coverage

McClatchy reports on this trend. Among American workers, employer-provided retiree coverage has dropped from 29 percent in 1997 to 17.7 percent in 2010.  

McClatchy: U.S. Companies Are Chipping Away At Retiree Health Benefits
Once a mainstay of blue-collar and government jobs, retiree health benefits are steadily disappearing. Companies long offered them as a way of retaining workers. Now companies are shedding these plans and the expectations they entailed. By 2010, just 17.7 percent of American workers had employer-provided retiree health coverage, down sharply from about 29 percent in 1997, according to the Employee Benefit Research Institute, a nonpartisan study organization (Hall, 4/2).

In other news, the Associated Press reports on insurance company executive pay -

The Associated Press: Insurers Aetna, WellPoint Bulk Up Executive Pay
Health insurers enjoyed a boom year in 2013, with soaring earnings and stock prices, and some of the biggest companies shelled out millions of dollars to either keep or attract their leaders. Aetna Inc. Chairman and CEO Mark T. Bertolini saw his total compensation more than double to top $30 million last year, largely due to restricted stock and options valued at $17.6 million that the nation’s third-largest insurer gave him last August. Meanwhile, WellPoint CEO Joseph R. Swedish received $1.5 million in restricted stock for joining the second-largest insurer last year and about $3.8 million to make up for pay he forfeited leaving his old job running a multistate Catholic hospital system (4/2).

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