Obamacare premiums set to spike again in 2017

Obamacare was instituted to make sure that every American had access to healthcare, especially low-income individuals and families. But Obamacare insurance premiums are set to go up yet again. For many, their families will be covered, but it could be a hardship.

In 2017, some of the most popular types of Obamacare health insurance plans want to jack up their prices by 10% or more in 14 major cities, an analysis published Wednesday reveals.

The Kaiser Family Foundation analysis shows there is a wide variation in the proposed prices of lower-cost so-called silver plans. The foundation found that about half of the markets it looked at would see a slight drop in the number of insurers selling plans.

The price hikes ranged from a high of an 18% premium increase proposed for the second-lowest-cost silver plan in Portland, Oregon, to a low of a 13% price cut for the same type of plan in Providence, Rhode Island.

In most of those areas, Kaiser’s report shows double-digit hikes would be common. [1]

Cynthia Cox, lead author of the analysis, said:

“Premiums are going up faster in 2017 than they have in past years.”

The impact on consumers will depend largely on whether they receive government subsidies for their premiums, as well as their own willingness to switch plans to keep increases more manageable.

Among the cities Kaiser looked at, the monthly premium for a 40-year-old nonsmoker in 2017 will range from $192 in Albuquerque, New Mexico, to $482 in Burlington, Vermont.

About 12 million are covered by Obamacare, receiving their coverage through HealthCare.gov and state-run online insurance markets. Nearly 7 in 10 choose silver plans, which are mid-tier options which allows consumers with lower incomes to also get financial help with out-of-pocket costs when they receive medical care.