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ObamaCare’s Higher Costs Are Being Felt From Coast To Coast

- May 30, 2014

Ohioans And Small Businesses Shopping On The ObamaCare Exchange Face Double Digit Premium Increases

According To 2015 Rate Proposals, Ohio Customers Shopping For Health Coverage On The ObamaCare Exchange Face An Increase Of 13 Percent. "Premiums would increase 13 percent next year for Ohioans who buy health coverage through the federally run insurance exchange, the Ohio Department of Insurance said yesterday." (Ben Sutherly, "ObamaCare Premiums To Rise 13%, Ohio Agency Says," The Columbus Dispatch, 5/30/14)

  • For The Same Coverage As Last Year, Average Monthly Premiums For An Individual Will Increase From $332.58 To $374.42. "Premiums in 2015 for an individual would average $374.42 per month, compared with $332.58 per month for the same coverage this year, the department said in a prepared statement." (Ben Sutherly, "ObamaCare Premiums To Rise 13%, Ohio Agency Says," The Columbus Dispatch, 5/30/14)
     
  • Ohio Small Businesses Will Also Face An 11 Percent Average Increase, Or $446.78 A Month Per Employee. "For small businesses, proposed premiums would increase 11 percent on average, to $446.78 a month per employee." (Ben Sutherly, "ObamaCare Premiums To Rise 13%, Ohio Agency Says," The Columbus Dispatch, 5/30/14)

"Medical Mutual Of Ohio Said It Plans To Increase Premiums By 8 Percent …" "Medical Mutual of Ohio said it plans to increase premiums by 8 percent next year for coverage sold through the government-run marketplace." (Ben Sutherly, "ObamaCare Premiums To Rise 13%, Ohio Agency Says," The Columbus Dispatch, 5/30/14)

  • The Increase Stems From An Older Pool Of Customers That Selected Medical Mutual's Health Plan Offered In 2014 On The ObamaCare Exchange. "The proposed rate hikes are due to the fact that the 38,000 Ohioans enrolled in Medical Mutual marketplace health plans this year were older than expected, said Heather Thiltgen, vice president of individual sales and marketing. With only a few months of data available, insurance carriers are still getting to know the market, she said." (Ben Sutherly, "ObamaCare Premiums To Rise 13%, Ohio Agency Says," The Columbus Dispatch, 5/30/14)

Premiums In South Carolina Are Predicted To Increase

South Carolina's Insurance Director, Ray Farmer, Expects Premium Increases For Residents Shopping For Coverage On The ObaamCare Exchange. "The S.C. Department of Insurance director predicts the same four companies that sold health insurance plans to South Carolina residents on the federal exchange during the Affordable Care Act's first enrollment window will offer those plans again later this year. There may be one key difference though - the price of those plans will go up, Director Ray Farmer speculated." (Lauren Sausser, "S.C. Insurance Director: 'ObamaCare' Policies Will Cost More Next Year," The Post And Courier , 5/29/14)

  • Farmer: "I Think They Will Increase, But I Would Not Hazard A Guess At This Point." "'I think they'll be different. We'll know in just a few months what that difference is. I think they will increase, but I would not hazard a guess at this point,' Farmer said Thursday." (Lauren Sausser, "S.C. Insurance Director: 'ObamaCare' Policies Will Cost More Next Year," The Post And Courier , 5/29/14)

Municipal Governments In New Mexico Are Shelling Out More Due To ObamaCare Provisions

ObamaCare Is Leading To Higher Health Care Costs For Municipal Governments In San Juan County, New Mexico. "Many aspects of the Affordable Health Care Act are still mysteries to local government officials, but it is certain, they say, that employee health care costs will grow." (Dan Schwartz, "Officials: ObamaCare Kicks Up Employee Health Care Costs," Farmington Daily Times , 5/29/14)

  • Due To ObamaCare's Fee On Providers, San Juan County Will Pay $64,197 In January 2015. "'One fee providers must pay compensates health care insurance companies that attract a high percentage of people who may have high medical costs.' Tom Swenk, the city's human resources director, said it's like insurance for insurers. 'This fee requires that the county pay $63 per person covered under their plan, and in January 2015 it will pay in total $64,197', said Cricket Long, the county benefits coordinator. Farmington has appointed in its preliminary fiscal year 2015 budget $100,000 for the fee, Swenk said." (Dan Schwartz, "Officials: ObamaCare Kicks Up Employee Health Care Costs," Farmington Daily Times , 5/29/14)
     
  • Municipal Governments In San Juan County Will Also Pay Thousands More In Fees To Fund ObamaCare's Patient-Centered Outcome Research Institute (PCORI). "The other fee providers pay helps fund the Patient-Centered Outcome Research Institute, an agency authorized by Congress to conduct research to help patients and healthcare providers make better informed decisions. Providers must pay $1 per person covered under their plan to the institute. In 2015, that fee will increase to $2 per person. San Juan County will pay $1,063 for the fee in July, Long said. Farmington paid $1,440 for the fee last year and has set aside $4,000 in its preliminary fiscal year 2015 budget, Swenk said." (Dan Schwartz, "Officials: ObamaCare Kicks Up Employee Health Care Costs," Farmington Daily Times , 5/29/14)

County Executive Officer Kim Carpenter: ObamaCare is "Not as Affordable As It Was Perceived." " County Executive Officer Kim Carpenter said the act is 'not as affordable as it was perceived.'" (Dan Schwartz, "Officials: ObamaCare Kicks Up Employee Health Care Costs," Farmington Daily Times , 5/29/14)

  • Carpenter: ObamaCare Is "Pacing A Huge Dent In Our Budget." "'This has a direct impact also on our indigent program -- between Obamacare and (Gov. Susana Martinez), and her initiatives,' he said, referring to a legislative mandate for New Mexico counties to provide millions of dollars to a statewide hospital fund. 'It's placing a huge dent in our budget.'" (Dan Schwartz, "Officials: ObamaCare Kicks Up Employee Health Care Costs," Farmington Daily Times , 5/29/14)
     
  • Farmington City Manager Rob Mayes: "The Fact Is, Our Costs Have Gone Up For Providing Healthcare For Our Employees." "'The fact is,' Farmington City Manager Rob Mayes said, 'our costs have gone up for providing healthcare for our employees.'" (Dan Schwartz, "Officials: ObamaCare Kicks Up Employee Health Care Costs," Farmington Daily Times , 5/29/14)

Alaskan Small Businesses Continue To Face Higher Costs Due To The Law

For Alaskan Small Businesses, Like The Club Paris Restaurant In Anchorage, Rising Health Care Costs Have Put The Restaurant In A Difficult Predicament. "Health insurance costs have already begun to affect Club Paris co-owner Scott Selman, who said he will have to raise restaurant prices to cope with increased costs. Selman's family has owned the downtown Anchorage restaurant since the 1970s. Many of his employees have worked at the restaurant for years and, in some cases, decades. They're like family, he said. … But the continual rise of health care costs has put him in a bind." (Laurel Andrews, "Alaska's Small Businesses Feel Pinch Of Rising Health Care Costs," Alaska Dispatch, 5/27/14)

  • Club Paris' Monthly Insurance Costs Have Increased $5,000 A Month Since Last Year. "Selman said he pays $17,600 monthly in health insurance costs - a roughly $5,000 per month increase from last year." (Laurel Andrews, "Alaska's Small Businesses Feel Pinch Of Rising Health Care Costs," Alaska Dispatch, 5/27/14)

Club Paris Co-Owner Scott Selman Has Called The Higher Costs "Crippling," Making Him Unsure How The Business Can Continue Absorbing The Costs. Selman likened the 'crippling' costs to issuing an additional payroll every month. 'It's killing me,' he said. 'I just don't know how long we can keep absorbing these costs." (Laurel Andrews, "Alaska's Small Businesses Feel Pinch Of Rising Health Care Costs," Alaska Dispatch, 5/27/14)

  • Selman Is Worried That The Rising Health Care Costs For His Business Will Price It Out Of The Market. "Selman isn't comfortable cutting his employees' paychecks to balance the books. 'Consequently, the only real place we can make changes is in the price,' he said. He now worries whether he'll price himself out of the market. 'It's a fear, but we just try to do the best we can.'" (Laurel Andrews, "Alaska's Small Businesses Feel Pinch Of Rising Health Care Costs," Alaska Dispatch, 5/27/14)

Linda Peters, Owner Of ProComm Alaska, Is Struggling With Higher Health Care Premiums For Employees, Which Have Nearly Doubled In The Past Two Years. "Like Selman, business owner Linda Peters also is struggling with rising health care costs. Peters owns ProComm Alaska, a small business specializing in two-way radio communications. Peters provides health insurance for her 13 full-time employees. Peters said she is paying $956 per employee for health insurance every month. Two years ago, she paid $513." (Laurel Andrews, "Alaska's Small Businesses Feel Pinch Of Rising Health Care Costs," Alaska Dispatch, 5/27/14)

  • Peters Was Forced To Stop Paying 25 Percent Of Employee Premiums Due To Rising Rates. "She used to pay 25 percent of her employees' dependent premiums, but stopped paying those benefits altogether last year due to rising rates." (Laurel Andrews, "Alaska's Small Businesses Feel Pinch Of Rising Health Care Costs," Alaska Dispatch, 5/27/14)

An Alaskan Insurance Brokerage Firm Has Come Across "Roughly A Dozen Small Businesses Looking To Drop Their Group Health Insurance Plans" Due To New ObamaCare Regulations And Higher Costs. "Enroll Alaska, an insurance brokerage and division of Northrim Bank, has had a different experience. Chief operating officer Tyann Boling said that the division had been approached by roughly a dozen small businesses looking to drop their group health insurance plans. Businesses are making their decision based on the new ACA regulations and increasing costs -- and also because the option of sending employees to the individual marketplace can in some cases offer Alaskans better health insurance at lower costs. For small businesses, insurance costs are 'truly a burden,' Boling said, and some are deciding that dropping insurance is better for them and their employees." (Laurel Andrews, "Alaska's Small Businesses Feel Pinch Of Rising Health Care Costs," Alaska Dispatch, 5/27/14)


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