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Health insurance policy with $100 bills.

First it was Oregon, then California. Now New York weighs in, showing that the Affordable Care Act is going to reduce the cost of health insurance premiums for many subscribers.
 
State insurance regulators say they have approved rates for 2014 that are at least 50 percent lower on average than those currently available in New York. Beginning in October, individuals in New York City who now pay $1,000 a month or more for coverage will be able to shop for health insurance for as little as $308 monthly. With federal subsidies, the cost will be even lower.

Supporters of the new health care law, the Affordable Care Act, credited the drop in rates to the online purchasing exchanges the law created, which they say are spurring competition among insurers that are anticipating an influx of new customers.

Those dramatically reduced premiums are a reflection of New York's somewhat unique individual market for health insurance. In 1993, the state passed a law requiring insurance companies to take all comers, regardless of pre-existing conditions. But the law didn't include a mandate for individuals to sign up. Without the presence of a younger, healthier, premium-paying bunch of people in the pool, insurance premiums skyrocketed. That's one of the reasons that only about 17,000 New Yorkers who don't have employer-based insurance buy it on their own. There are 2.6 million uninsured people in the state.

The savings seen in New York's market aren't going to be reflected in all states because it does have a unique individual market. But for the 2.6 million uninsured in that state, that doesn't matter: They'll be able to afford health insurance now, and that's a big deal.

Originally posted to Joan McCarter on Wed Jul 17, 2013 at 08:10 AM PDT.

Also republished by Daily Kos.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Tip Jar (24+ / 0-)

    "The NSA’s capability at any time could be turned around on the American people, and no American would have any privacy left, such is the capability to monitor everything. [...] There would be no place to hide."--Frank Church

    by Joan McCarter on Wed Jul 17, 2013 at 08:10:42 AM PDT

  •  Just a Thought - Add to Post? (9+ / 0-)

    There's a diary on the rec list that talks about this same issue... and lots of people are asking what the plans cover...

    The benchmark plans for essential health benefits by state are located here.

    Too Folk For You. - Schmidting in the Punch Bowl - verb - Committing an unexpected and underhanded political act intended to "spoil the party."

    by TooFolkGR on Wed Jul 17, 2013 at 08:19:16 AM PDT

    •  Plan coverage isn't public yet ... (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      karmsy, Judge Moonbox, divineorder

      Last night I attended a Town Hall in Indianapolis for participants in Indiana's high risk pool.

      The Executive Director of the non-profit told us that the details are still being ironed out, so sit tight.

      Eventually info will be available at online at the Health Insurance Marketplace. You can sign up there to get email alerts as info becomes available.

      "Let us not look back to the past with anger, nor towards the future with fear, but look around with awareness." James Thurber

      by annan on Wed Jul 17, 2013 at 03:49:14 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  But, but, but... (5+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    elwior, kovie, puakev, Odysseus, karmsy

    an uninsured, well-heeled man in his 20s will have to pay 100% more than he would have otherwise.

    I'm waiting for the study from Avik Roy. He's probably already working on it.

    http://www.forbes.com/...

  •  I'm on an individual policy in CA (12+ / 0-)

    My current insurer, Aetna, is withdrawing from the individual insurance market in CA. (Don't let the door hit you.)

    I've seen some sample numbers from Covered California and they look like I'll get a considerable savings on what I'm currently paying. But I'm eager for this thing to go live.

    "The smartest man in the room is not always right." -Richard Holbrooke

    by Demi Moaned on Wed Jul 17, 2013 at 08:30:30 AM PDT

    •  LOVE your sig! (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Demi Moaned

      Richard Holbrooke, how we all miss that guy! The sentiment in that is brilliant and I expect Holbrooke was often the smartest guy in the room whenever he walked in.

      What stronger breast-plate than a heart untainted! Thrice is he arm'd, that hath his quarrel just; And he but naked, though lock'd up in steel, Whose conscience with injustice is corrupted. King Henry, scene ii

      by TerryDarc on Wed Jul 17, 2013 at 05:36:40 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  reduces premiums (6+ / 0-)

    reduces the deficit. time for the gop to vote on another repeal.

    The cold passion for truth hunts in no pack. -Robinson Jeffers

    by Laurence Lewis on Wed Jul 17, 2013 at 09:00:11 AM PDT

    •  Increases Disposable Income Too. It's A Stimulus (4+ / 0-)

      package too.

      •  THAT is an excellent point! (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        majcmb1

        Don't care if I did read it in the really shitty comments this morning on the NYT. Couldn't believe how negative they were and the NTY's select comments were even more negative than the rest. I suspect that a Faux News devotee was given the controls for a while.

        This is a HUGE FUCKING WIN for progressives everywhere and don't you forget it!

        What stronger breast-plate than a heart untainted! Thrice is he arm'd, that hath his quarrel just; And he but naked, though lock'd up in steel, Whose conscience with injustice is corrupted. King Henry, scene ii

        by TerryDarc on Wed Jul 17, 2013 at 05:38:52 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  Biden put it best (7+ / 0-)

    "This is a big f*ckin' deal."

    I haven't forgotten The Path to 9/11, Disney. You're still dead to me.

    by beemerr on Wed Jul 17, 2013 at 09:22:35 AM PDT

  •  After 20 years of people not buying insurance (0+ / 0-)

    while insurers must issue insurance to those with pre existing conditions, it will be an interesting economic test to see how often the young and healthy actually buy insurance when there is a modest penalty for not being insured.  

    If Obamacare can make it in New York, it can succeed in any state.

    The most important way to protect the environment is not to have more than one child.

    by nextstep on Wed Jul 17, 2013 at 02:41:40 PM PDT

  •  Wonder if at any time Red State ACA deniers will (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    annan, karmsy

    get ticked off with their state legislatures denying Obamacare. This could be a big help for Allyson Schwartz in running for governor of Pa.

    "They will not collect a ransom in exchange for not crashing the American economy. The full faith and credit of the United States of America is not a bargaining chip."

    by TofG on Wed Jul 17, 2013 at 03:44:19 PM PDT

    •  As long as they're all clustered together (0+ / 0-)

      I doubt it. Next door states I expect will put pressure on the asshole legislators to enact something of the healthcare exchanges.

      Their legislators simply don't care. This is a death knell for Republicans and the conservative, limited govt. meme all across the land and it will happen eventually. I see it coming faster and faster and the states run by the redneck assholes will fall one by one.

      Too fucking bad.

      What stronger breast-plate than a heart untainted! Thrice is he arm'd, that hath his quarrel just; And he but naked, though lock'd up in steel, Whose conscience with injustice is corrupted. King Henry, scene ii

      by TerryDarc on Wed Jul 17, 2013 at 05:41:55 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Be ready for the RW comeback (0+ / 0-)

    but, how much are co-pays and deductibles going to go up?

    I'm guessing not much, but until there is clarification, you have to assume that everything else is the same.

    "I'm not a member of an organized political party - I'm a Democrat." Will Rogers

    by newjeffct on Wed Jul 17, 2013 at 03:45:21 PM PDT

  •  I attended a Town Hall in Indianapolis ... (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    majcmb1, nextstep, TerryDarc

    last night for participants in Indiana's high risk pool. Based on what we heard, I appreciate what you're saying about not expecting all states to experience the same large % reduction in premiums.

    When you factor in the unique circumstances in NY, I hope we're not setting people up for disappointment. The ACA is gonna be good, but benefits will flow disproportionately to those who have been screwed the most in the past.

    The executive director of the Indiana Comprehensive Health Insurance Association (ICHIA, a non-profit created by the state 30+ years ago to insure the uninsurable in Indiana) told us that older Hoosiers will probably see a reduction in premiums, but younger healthy individuals will not and may even see an increase.

    "Let us not look back to the past with anger, nor towards the future with fear, but look around with awareness." James Thurber

    by annan on Wed Jul 17, 2013 at 03:46:06 PM PDT

    •  this may be interesting, then... (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      annan

      Q: Who do the Republicans consider their base?
      A: Older folk.

      Q: Whose premiums stand to most likely go down?
      A: Older folk.

      Q: Who will have tangible proof that the R's lied?
      A: Older folk Nobody, because Benghazi.

      "But hate wears you down, and does not hurt your enemy. It is like taking poison and wishing your enemy would die." - - Cherokee saying

      by brillig on Wed Jul 17, 2013 at 03:51:04 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Yeah, heads were exploding last night ... (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        brillig, TerryDarc

        It was a very civilized 2-hour Town Hall but the cognitive dissonance was palpable.

        "Let us not look back to the past with anger, nor towards the future with fear, but look around with awareness." James Thurber

        by annan on Wed Jul 17, 2013 at 03:56:22 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  I hear the tappings of the nails (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    TerryDarc

    being driven into the Republican's coffin.

  •  Here's A Handy Chart From The NY Dept. Of (0+ / 0-)

    Financial Services comparing 2013 premiums for standard plans by insurer with projected 2014 premiums.
    http://www.nationalmemo.com/...

    Here's the NY rates chart by region.

  •  Typical Crap article by NYT. . . (0+ / 0-)

    No credit to Obamacare in the title of the article (which is all many people read and thus carries a lot of influence), and the reporters can't even bring themselves to say "Obamacare is lowering premiums," only that "Obamacare supporters" say it's doing that. WTF else would be doing that?!

    God forbid the media ever simply report that President Obama's policy is working. I've never been less surprised.

    TS

    twitter: @Timeslayer_

    by Timeslayer on Wed Jul 17, 2013 at 04:21:30 PM PDT

    •  And the comments were out of Fox News! (0+ / 0-)

      WTF was it with the posters?

      What stronger breast-plate than a heart untainted! Thrice is he arm'd, that hath his quarrel just; And he but naked, though lock'd up in steel, Whose conscience with injustice is corrupted. King Henry, scene ii

      by TerryDarc on Wed Jul 17, 2013 at 05:43:51 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Are these lower premiums for the same coverage, (0+ / 0-)

    deductibles and copays? That seems hard to believe.It would be good to see side by side comparisons.

    The frog jumped/ into the old pond/ plop! (Basho)

    by Wolf10 on Wed Jul 17, 2013 at 04:25:45 PM PDT

  •  Not according to Andy Harris, brightest guy (0+ / 0-)

    In Maryland's Congressional delegation and rabid ALEC acolyte. He just sent out a pr piece on the Farm Bill which took a little time out from his explanation that bills loaded with "irrelevant" amendments are A Bad Thing.

    My paraphrase. The irrelevant Bad Stuff was food stamps, you see. Now lets watch the A-man stick to his principles and vote against every bill with amendments tacked on that don't relate directly to the subject matter.

    But I digress. According to Andy. Obamacare is a failure. That's odd, because I didn't think it was close to being fully implemented in Maryland.

    I know that I am not alone in this delusion, having had a long conversation with our county health officer just this afternoon about its effects.

    He, like Andy, is an M.D., so I guess there are some guys who got through med school on something other than gray matter.

    Thump! Bang. Whack-boing. It's dub!

    by dadadata on Wed Jul 17, 2013 at 04:38:54 PM PDT

  •  I bought insurance in NYC (0+ / 0-)

    it costs $184 per month for basic emergency coverage. This means i can go to any hospital and the entire visit is covered in case i get hit by a cab. What is this crap about it costing $1000? Perhaps that is for more extensive coverage. ( i don't go to doctors on a regular basis)  My girlfriend (an actress) also got this insurance $184 per month. We both got the same individual plan. she is 43, i am 36. once the exchange comes into effect, maybe this rate will go down. Does anyone know?

    •  Catastrophic coverage (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      annan, Ianb007, TerryDarc

      Yeah, the $1000 coverage is for a normal health insurance policy, the kind that includes checkups and medical care for illnesses less drastic than getting run over by a bus.

      In the exchange, you won't see coverage as stripped of benefits as what you're buying now. And the base rate, even for the lowest-benefit, "bronze" plan will be more than you're paying. But if you and your actress aren't making good money, there will be a government subsidy, and you may find that for around what the two of you are paying now, you can get family (or two individual if you must) coverage that goes a lot farther than what you're buying now.

  •  Lower premiums may not be relevant (0+ / 0-)

    Lower insurance premiums are not relevant to an insured's access to health care.  Unless the cost of health care is reduced, the price of a policy does not affect existing barriers to health care.

    For the past 25 years (my "work life"), I have witnessed and experienced:
    (A) rising insurance premiums that continue to be unreasonably burdensome, while at the same time:
    (B) a significant rise in the share of medical costs incurred by the insured, the employer/company or both.

    Example: 2005-2012 insurance premiums for my employer and similarly situated employers approximately doubled (some more than doubled, some a bit less).  At the same time, I, my colleagues and similarly employed persons continued to pay rising co-payments, rising deductibles, face rising "major medical expense" ceilings and significantly higher prescription costs.  The rising prescription costs are particularly burdensome since some prescriptions are being taken off insurance company formularies altogether.  This means workers/families must pay 100% for monopoly medication pricing structure, go without medications or treatment, take something less effective, substitute a more dangerous medication and/or take substitute medications with menacing side-effects.

    The NYT article cited in this post acknowledges lower premiums; however, it comes with the following caveat:

    The least expensive plans, some offered by newcomers to the market, may not offer wide access to hospitals and doctors, experts said.
    While the rates will fall over all, apples-to-apples comparisons are impossible from this year to next because all of the plans are essentially new insurance products (emphasis mine).
    As long as the focus is "insuring" people vs. helping people "access health care," we will have more of the former and less of the latter.

    So far, I have not seen evidence that premium increases or decreases improve access to health care - it merely affects access to insurance.  I have witnessed a broad-based and extreme increase in the cost barriers to health care regardless of whether insurance premiums increase or decrease. For the unlucky person with a chronic illness, or families that experience a catastrophic illness or event, paying $1,000 less in premiums, per month, does not make up for paying an extra $2000 per month - just in prescriptions - not to mention other enhanced costs or policy exclusions.

    It's phenomenally awesome to have a premium reduced by $5,000 or $10,000 per year. Yay! So far, so good.
    However, when co-pays, deductibles and prescription prices rise $10,000 to $25,000 per year, a ubiquity of private insurance policies (or less expensive private insurance premiums) will still mean bankrupting medical costs and/or loss of access to healthcare.

    Granted, my experience is anecdotal (i.e., a few thousand people and particular industries and companies).  However, for the past decade, I have not seen any examples, read any studies or read any credible statistics of an overall lowering of health care costs for people who actually become sick. I live in Vermont, which has one of the highest levels of "insured" people in the country -- near-universal coverage; and this has been my experience.

    The ACA's impact, or "success" is, and will be, more people with an insurance product.  
    As structured, the ACA's failure will be more financial barriers to health care. This is the expected and intended result of promoting insurance companies to continue acting as administrative burdens and financial skimmers to the health care system.

    sláinte,
    cl
    -- Religion is like sodomy: both can be harmless when practiced between consenting adults but neither should be imposed upon children.

    by Caoimhin Laochdha on Thu Jul 18, 2013 at 08:42:55 AM PDT

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