Rising Premium Rates in Colorado and How To Avoid Them

rising-premium-ratesIn 2016, ColoHealth clients and others who purchase their own health insurance are likely to face rising premium rates. 2015 was a different story, with rates only going up less than 1% on average in Colorado, but this will not be happening again. You will need to reassess your current plan in order to avoid paying higher premium rates.

Colorado Carriers and Rate Increases

Colorado HealthOP and Rocky Mountain HMO are just two examples of insurance carriers that are raising their rates. Colorado HealthOP’s average rate will rise by 21.6%, and Rocky Mountain HMO will increase by 34%. However, Kaiser will only go up 2%.

Colorado HealthOP is the most competitively-priced plan in most cases this year, but that is not likely to be the case next year. Because of the volatility in premiums, most people will need to switch to a different carrier if they want to stay in the best-priced plan available. It is also important to make sure your doctor is covered if you do change plans, since the carriers tend to have different doctor networks from one another.

What Happens If You’re Getting a Subsidy

If you are receiving a subsidy, rate increases will have a big effect on you. As an example, if your subsidized premium costs $100 a month with a retail price of $500, and the rate increases by 20% to $600, your premium might also go up by $100. You are paying $200 a month instead of $100, so you are now paying 100% more with the change in rates.

What To Do

So how do you avoid paying more in 2016? The first step is to always look over your health needs every year before shopping for a new plan. This way, you know exactly what you’re looking for and what needs to be included in your plan. Always compare plans and carriers. See if you qualify for a premium subsidy. Even in the face of raising rates, you can avoid having to pay extra, and still find the plan that’s best for you.

Because this is something you should review every year, look for a health insurance agent that brokers many different carriers, and offers to review your options for you each year. Remember, the services of an agent are built into your premium, so you should make sure you have a knowledgeable agent and take advantage of their expertise.

  Date posted: Thursday, July 23rd, 2015
Category: Health Care Reform, Health Insurance

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