Are Health Insurance Rates on the Rise?

We have spent a lot of time talking about the Affordable Care Act and how it will effect healthcare professionals…..both from a monetary standpoint as well as a doctor/patient relationship position.  However, we have not really touched upon the impact on the average citizen who does not get coverage through their employer.  One of the reasons we didn’t was that most “experts” had stated that costs would actually go down once the bill was implemented.  Unfortunately, we are not seeing this happening at all.  According to this NYTimes article:

In California, Aetna is proposing rate increases of as much as 22 percent, Anthem Blue Cross 26 percent and Blue Shield of California 20 percent for some of those policy holders, according to the insurers’ filings with the state for 2013. These rate requests are all the more striking after a 39 percent rise sought by Anthem Blue Cross in 2010 helped give impetus to the law, known as the Affordable Care Act, which was passed the same year and will not be fully in effect until 2014.

In other states, like Florida and Ohio, insurers have been able to raise rates by at least 20 percent for some policy holders. The rate increases can amount to several hundred dollars a month.

We hope this is not the standard, but this was a major talking point from the folks who were against Obamacare from the very beginning.  This could very well damage small businesses and possibly prevent some people from being able to afford healthcare coverage. What we still need to see is if the healthcare exchanges will force these costs down.  What do you think?  Will costs continue to go up…..or will they steadily go down after this jump?

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