Guardian - US insurers have asked for double-digit increases for about third of the health insurance plans listed on the national healthcare exchange, a report has found.
The Agile Heath Insurance report found that 7% of plans sold on the exchange have proposed a rate increase of at least 30%, and 14% of the plans have proposed a rate increase of at least 20%. Rate of uninsured Americans drops among poor and minority groups Read more
Under the Affordable Care Act, commonly referred to as Obamacare, the new rates would go into effect come November, at the beginning of the open enrollment period for 2016.
At a July town hall in Tennessee, Barack Obama said that he expected the rates to “come in significantly lower than what’s being requested”.
Yet a month later, a proposed 36% rate hike by BlueCross was approved.
Tennessee’s insurance commissioner Julie Mix McPeak said that the increase for 2016 was necessary to cover the increase in costs related to claims from sick people who signed up for health insurance plans during the first two years of the ACA’s operation.
Since almost nine in 10 Americans shopping for health insurance plans on the ACA exchange receive financial assistance, most of them would not actually see a particularly drastic price increase.
When proposing new rates for 2016, insurers have to justify why they are seeking price increases. It is then up to the state insurance regulators to determine if the rate increases are justified or not.