Government health insurance markets holding up, barely

Posted June 25, 2017

If the Affordable Care Act is still in place next year, consumers could find that their health insurance rates are going up by double digits. Health insurance matters for low-income parents: when parents are insured, their children are more likely to get the health care they need to ensure they lead healthier and prosperous lives. With the proposed fine set at zero for individuals, many people will drop their overpriced medical insurance.

Health insurers Anthem and MDwise are both withdrawing from the ACA's IN marketplace next year. That leaves CareSource Indiana Inc. and Celtic Insurance Company as the only companies that remain. The average monthly premium would be $423. Changes in individual policy premiums would range from a 15.7 percent increase to a 117.7 percent jump from current prices. Their average premium would be $452.

The consulting firm Avalere expects more than 40 percent of USA counties to have only one insurer selling coverage on the exchange in 2018. About 4,600 people bought exchange coverage in those counties this year, with some 175,000 statewide.

Majorities of Independents and Democrats also opposed the Republicans on those issues, while additionally slamming the provision to defund Planned Parenthood, the plan to revoke essential health benefits, undoing the employer mandate, and the multiple proposals to cut programs that aid the poor, like Medicaid. The mandate is seen as crucial to encouraging healthy people to enroll and balance the costs an insurer incurs from people who use their insurance.

Everyone knows the Senate is trying to ram through their version of the GOP House health care bill called the American Healthcare Act behind closed doors and in secret. The bill, which was released with no analysis and no cost estimates, would cut taxes by almost $1 trillion over the next decade, mostly for corporations and the richest families in America.