Open Enrollment begins on November 1, and the 2021 premium rates for ACA plans have now been announced. Rates will be increasing slightly, because insurance companies have had to shoulder the costs of the free coronavirus testing and treatments mandated by Congress. This no-cost testing and treatment has left insurers with a $103 billion dollar bill. The rate increase may not be very large for some, though, because of the medical loss ratio rebate that will be incorporated into their premiums next year. If you’re looking for a new plan, or want to change plans, we’ve broken down what your costs could look like, and how you can still find affordable health insurance that fits your budget and coverage needs.
The ACA Premium Increase
The average cost of ACA premiums is increasing by only a few percentage points, with very few states experiencing a decrease. The increase will vary depending on the state, and will also be affected by whether each individual insurer has met the legal standard of spending 80% of revenue on direct medical care. If they have not met the standard over the last three years, then they must issue medical loss ratio rebates back to the policyholders. Many are doing this by putting the rebates towards premiums for next year to help keep them from spiking too much.
Despite projections of slight increases, some policyholders have been posting letters from their insurance carriers on Twitter that say their premiums will increase anywhere from 20 to 48%! In addition, according to one study, commercial insurers like Blue Cross Blue Shield, Aetna, Cigna, and Oscar Health could increase premiums anywhere from 4% to 40%.
So far, the highest increase for individual health plans has been proposed by Oscar Health in New York at 19.1%. For small group plans (employer-sponsored plans), Oscar Health also has the highest proposed increase of 29.1%, followed by Emblem at 20.9%.
More Affordable Options
Now that Open Enrollment is approaching, you should reassess your current insurance plan, if you have one (and if you don’t, now is the time to start looking!) It’s possible that different insurers have expanded into your state or county, and you might have more options available to you than you did before. Take advantage of this time and consider all of your options!
Because premiums vary by state or region, it is important to get some help determining what the increases to your premiums could look like. You should also get help finding the best plans available in your area. The best way to do this is by speaking with an EZ agent. Our agents are trained in your region and work with the top-rated companies in the country, so they have quick and easy access to all plans in your area. They will go over your medical and financial needs, and then compare all plans, including their coverage, premiums, deductibles, and other costs of each plan. We will help find an affordable plan, and maybe even lower your health insurance cost!
To compare plans in your area for free, enter your zip code in the bar above, or to speak to one of our highly trained, licensed agents, call 888-350-1890.