First Obamacare premium notices for 2015 show double-digit increases

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Article Highlights

  • The first Obamacare rate increases for 2015 have been posted on-line.

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  • Washington State and Virginia posted the proposed rate increases for their exchanges on-line.

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  • In Washington state, Obamacare enrollment-weighted average rate increase is 9.6%. In Virginia, it’s 11.7%.

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The first Obamacare rate increases for 2015 have been posted on-line. The figures come from two states, Washington State and Virginia, which posted the proposed rate increases for their exchanges on-line. In Washington State, the enrollment-weighted average rate increase is 9.6%. In Virginia, it’s 11.7%.

Washington State’s average premium increase across all of its Obamacare plans is 6.4%. But the state is one of a handful that report exchange enrollment by plan. So the more meaningful statistic is the enrollment weighted average increase, since this measures the real impact on consumers. And that figure is 9.6%.

The health plan Centene, for example, which has enrolled 17% of consumers entering the Washington State exchange, is raising its 2015 rates by 11.2%. This puts the health plan toward the high end of the range. In Washington State, most of the plans offering products next year are the same insurers in the market this year. In all, there are only four new entrants in the state’s exchange market for 2015.

In Virginia, the highest premium hike is courtesy of Humana, which is proposing to raise its premiums by 22.4% next year. Wellpoint is seeking an increase of 8.5%. Aetna, which also participates in the state’s exchange, hasn’t posted its rates yet. Only two new plans will be entering the Virginia market next year.

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