Avelere, which provides excellent analysis of health care pricing, spending and insurance coverage, has released a brief interim report on the state of 2015 premium rate filings for the public insurance exchanges. (Avelere Analysis) For the nine states included in the analysis the average monthly premium for the silver plans will rise 8%, from $324 to $350. Please note that silver plans have, pardon the expression, shitty coverage, with lots of cost-sharing. The range is from 2.5% in Rhode Island to 16% in Indiana. Oregon actually has a decrease of 1.4% and it also has the lowest average premiums. Vermont has the highest, so good luck with that single-payer idea. Premium variation among silver plans will increase, likely reflecting a paucity of data for health plans about their experience with exchange enrollees to date.
Here is the one thing I find hilarious about this report, it describes the premium increases as “modest”. Only in an ACA apologist’s parallel universe could an average 8% increase, 3 times the likely rate of inflation and at least twice the rate of GDP growth, and far in excess of a working person’s compensation growth, be described as modest. Doesn’t seem to match up with the President’s promise that premiums would go down either. The average monthly premium in 2014 for people who selected plans on the federal exchange and got a subsidy (the vast majority of enrollees) was over $340, or over $4000 a year. An 8% increase is $320. For these people that is not chump change. And please note that increasing the number of insurers participating on an exchange does not appear to have moderated increases, or should we think that absent that premium rates would have gone up even higher!!