Open Enrollment is still a few months away, but Covered California has released news regarding plan changes for 2017. Changes to rates can be managed by comparing your plan options, and luckily most of us will enjoy greater plan availability for next year!
The average increase in health insurance plan premiums is 13.2 percent. This sounds like a large increase, but in the past three years the rate increase has averaged 7 percent. This number still falls lower than price trends before the Affordable Care Act, so it appears that Covered California has succeeded in maintaining a competitive health insurance marketplace. Actual rate increases will depend upon individual plans, as well as your geographical area. Depending where you live and which plan you’ve chosen, your rate might not increase very much at all, or might increase significantly more than the state average.
About 80 percent of Californians can switch plans to keep premium increases to below 5 percent. While rates will climb in 2017, most Californians can manage this price hike by considering other health insurance plans. Some Californians can even pay less, depending upon their plan choice.
Insurers will expand nearly all Californians (92.6 percent) will now be able to choose from three or more insurance carriers.
Some benefit changes will help consumers save money when they seek health care. Consumers who enroll in Silver, Gold, or Platinum level plans will pay only a flat copay for emergency room visits, without having to reach a deductible. Consumers enrolled in Bronze level plans can see their doctor three times before they are subject to their deductible, and deductibles.
These are just some of the changes released by Covered California for the upcoming year. Soon you will receive a card in the mail, notifying you of any rate changes or other alterations in your current plan. Since switching plans could potentially save you a lot of money, give us a call before Open Enrollment to discuss your options. We’re now a Covered California storefront, and we can help you with all of your health insurance needs.