WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Sen. Sherrod Brown (D-OH) issued the following statement in a response to a report released today by the Kaiser Family Foundation on health costs:

“Today’s report makes the case for health reform even more clear. Too many Americans face exploding health costs that break household budgets and threaten the competiveness of our nation’s businesses. If we do not act, premiums will continue to rise and Americans will pay more in out-of-pocket expenses. While this may be in the interest of big insurance companies, our economy cannot afford premiums that increase by more than 130 percent every ten years. I hope my colleagues opposed to health reform will put middle class families and small businesses ahead of HMOs.”

The report found the average family health policy cost $13,375 in 2009 – costing the employer an average of $9,690 and the employee $3,515. Premiums increased by 131 percent in the past ten years. The full report can be viewed at www.kff.org.