Good news on health insurance costs

Added September 25th, 2013 by Jan Hudson | Email This Entry Email This Entry
Jan Hudson

Michigan’s average cost for the gold, silver and bronze health insurance plans that will be sold in the Health Insurance Marketplace came in below the national average, according to a report released by the federal government today.

This is very good news for uninsured Michiganians, who will soon have the opportunity to shop for, compare, and enroll in quality healthcare coverage in the Health Insurance Marketplace, set to open next Tuesday.

The report summarizes health plan choices and premiums expected to be available in the marketplaces for states that will have a fully federally run marketplace and for those that are partnering with the federal government. Michigan will have a federally operated marketplace and is expected to have an average of 43 plan options for purchasers to consider.

While the report includes estimated average costs of plans, it is a good indication of what those who purchase coverage in the Marketplace can expect. The actual cost for a purchaser will depend on age, location, family size and tobacco use.

Plans in the Marketplace will be high-quality coverage and must include a comprehensive set of benefits. They will vary by premium and cost sharing with bronze plans having the lowest premium but the highest cost sharing; platinum plans will have the highest premiums but lowest cost sharing.

Federal subsidies will lower the cost for those who qualify with incomes between 100% and 400% of the federal poverty level ($11,490 to 45,960 for an individual, $23,550 to $94,200 for a family of four), and will be based on the silver level plan.

Accounts can now be established on the federal marketplace website so that shopping and comparisons can begin on Oct. 1.

As with any major change, there may be glitches as implementation begins, but healthcare reform is working.  Competition is lowering prices. Quality, comprehensive coverage will become available, with federal subsidies making it affordable.

— Jan Hudson

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