(Paige Winfield Cunningham, WashingtonExaminer) Obamacare plans in California will cost 13.2 percent more on average next year if insurers follow through with their proposed rate increases, the state’s marketplace announced Tuesday.
Rates increased just 4 percent on average the last two years, but they will spike next year partially due to the end of a federal program designed to smooth insurer losses, Covered California Director Peter Lee told reporters Tuesday. With the announcement, California joins other states announcing that Obamacare customers probably will face big cost increases next year.
California’s two major marketplace insurers, Anthem and Blue Shield of California, are driving the cost increases, as they cover about half of the consumers. Anthem is requesting hikes of 16 percent on average and Blue Shield is requesting hikes of 19 percent on average, Lee said.
Trying to smooth the news, which dismayed consumer advocates in California, Lee stressed that rate hikes were also in the double-digits in the years before President Obama’s healthcare law started. They have averaged 7 percent each year for the last three years, lower than before the law. Click here to continue reading