Rising healthcare costs | The star

The overall cost of employer-provided medical benefits is expected to rise to 7.4% next year, from 7% this year, with a general average inflation rate of 2.4%.

It will be 8.2% (8% in 2021) in the Asia-Pacific region, Europe (5.6%), the Middle East and Africa (11.1%) and North America (6.6%) in 2022. For Malaysia, it should reach less than 12% against 14% this year.

The Covid-19 pandemic and economic downturn have impacted employer-sponsored medical plans, according to the 2022 Global Medical Trend Rates Report released by Aon plc, a global professional services company.

Such plans will continue to be widely used, with insurance being the most common and growing approach to funding. A spike is seen in usage figures for 2020/2021 in the Asia-Pacific region and in Europe.

More than half of the 108 countries surveyed reported a high level of use, if not much higher, of mental health and telehealth services, according to the report.

Noncommunicable diseases have a growing impact on healthcare costs globally. In Asia-Pacific, cardiovascular disease, cancer / tumor growth, ear, nose, throat or ENT / lung / respiratory disorders, diabetes and musculoskeletal / back are the common health problems that motivate health care demands.

Risk factors for unhealthy personal habits in the Asia-Pacific region are high blood pressure, physical inactivity, poor stress management, high cholesterol and aging which have directly contributed to the emergence of diseases. non-communicable, according to the report.

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