Some Will Pay Less for Health Insurance Under ACA

2.9 Percent Average Rate Decrease for Individual Policies

Joe DeStio
October 18, 2018 - 3:37 pm
Some health insurance customers in Pennsylvania will be paying less for coverage under the Affordable Care Act in 2019.
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HARRISBURG (Newsradio 1020 KDKA) – Some health insurance customers in Pennsylvania will be paying less for coverage under the Affordable Care Act in 2019. New rates for the individual market show an aggregate 2.3 percent decrease in rates according to numbers released by the state Insurance Department. For small group coverage, policy holders will pay an average 2.6 percent more.

“We are really getting our hands around the risk pool,” according to Pennsylvania Insurance Commissioner Jessica Altman. “Many insurers have taken strategies to help control costs.”

In addition, she says there will be more insurance options in 30 of Pennsylvania’s 67 counties. Statewide, no carriers left the market for 2019. There is one additional carrier in the Philadelphia area.

Related: UPMC-Highmark Agreement Expiring Has Many Confused With Medicare Open Enrollment

In the Pittsburgh area, UPMC will again offer two plans in the individual market. The most popular will increase two percent. Highmark has four plans on the individual market. The most popular shows a nearly seven percent decrease in cost.

Next year’s steady prices follow more significant increases for the current year. Altman blamed the uncertainty on the Trump administration’s decision last year to end cost sharing reduction payments under the ACA. 80 percent of policy holders on the marketplace get some form of federal assistance. Because tax credits are based on relative pricing Altman says consumers should shop the marketplace. She says more expensive plans may end up costing less based on the credits.

Open enrollment for the 2019 Affordable Care Act runs November 1 to December 15 of this year.