why are health insurance out of pocket maximums going up again

More than half of the employers surveyed said that offering high-deductible plans as an option or fully replacing their coverage with a high-deductible plan was one of their most effective cost-control measures.

Under a high-deductible plan, employees have access to a tax-advantaged health savings account (HSA) that they can use to pay for qualified health-care costs

You do not need to use up all of the funds in your HSA by the end of the year.

HSAs have a triple tax benefit: Your contributions are tax-deductible, your account grows free of taxes and your withdrawals are tax-free as long as the money covers qualified medical expenses.

Chances are you already have a high-deductible plan at work. Eighty-four percent of the large employers polled expect to offer them next year. More than one-third of them will them will make these plans the only choice for coverage.

Often, employers kick off a major educational initiative when they introduce workers to the high-deductible plans, said Marcotte. Many employers seed HSAs with contributions. The median employer contribution to an HSA is $600 for individual coverage and $1,100 for family plans, according to the survey.