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Old 09-05-2014, 06:46 AM   #81
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Originally Posted by Htown Harry View Post
There is another newly-released set of data derived from analyzing rate filings, this time from the Kaiser family Foundation:

Link to summary here (a link to the full report is at the upper right): Analysis of 2015 Premium Changes in the Affordable Care Actís Health Insurance Marketplaces | The Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation
Analysis of the report from former Washington Post reporter Sarah Kliff:
Some big Obamacare news: premiums will fall in seven big cities - Vox
Nice links, Harry.
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Old 09-05-2014, 08:03 AM   #82
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A few weeks ago, I posted in this thread about how my insurance preovider, Empire BCBS of New York, had filed a rate increase of about 18%. After some research, I discovered that their filed increase was reduced to about 7%, some good news. The 18% increase reminded me of the 2 huge increases I got hit with in 2010 and 2011 when my pre-ACA individual policy jumped 20% then another 25%, or 50% when taken together compared to what I was paying in 2009.

For those of you who live in New York, here is a link to the press release by the state's Department of Financial Services (DFS):

Press Release - September 4, 2014: Superintendent Lawsky Announces Setting Of 2015 Health Insurance Rates For New York, Including Rates For Health Benefits Exchange

And below is a summary chart of rate changes for the individual market: (Sorry, I don't know how to format it in the table form it appears in the link, but it is still readable.)

2015 INDIVIDUAL MARKET RATE ACTIONS - OVERALL SUMMARY

Company
Requested
Approved
Reduction
Aetna Life Insurance Co.
19.96%
5.32%
-14.64%
Affinity Health Plan*
-12.58%
-15.21%
-2.63%
CDPHP*
6.69%
0.15%
-6.54%
Emblem-HIP*
9.81%
6.72%
-3.09%
Empire BlueCross BlueShield HMO*
18.40%
7.37%
-11.03%
Excellus*
19.59%
9.23%
-10.36%
Fidelis*
7.14%
3.23%
-3.91%
Health Republic Insurance of New York*
15.35%
13.04%
-2.31%
Healthfirst*
-9.67%
-11.95%
-2.28%
HealthNow*
7.24%
1.41%
-5.83%
Independent Health Benefits Corp.*
5.44%
-2.01%
-7.45%
MetroPlus Health Plan*
17.78%
6.90%
-10.88%
MVP Health Care*
18.31%
9.97%
-8.34%
Care Connect (North Shore LIJ)*
-1.24%
-3.22%
-1.98%
Oscar*
6.28%
6.28%
0.00%
Oxford Health Plan
1.08%
-9.41%
-10.49%
UnitedHealthcare of NY*
-5.85%
-15.32%
-9.47%
All companies
12.50%
5.70%
-6.80%

* Companies that offer individual coverage on the NY State of Health Individual Marketplace
(Note: Freelancers Insurance Company, Crystal Run Health Plan, Montefiore Insurance Company and Wellcare of NY* are new entrants to the market and are selling new products with new premium rates, and therefore did not request rate increases. Accordingly, their premium rates are not shown in the above chart.)
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Old 09-05-2014, 10:13 AM   #83
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I live in a state (MO) that has zero regulatory control over prices. And there is still zero info coming out for coming years rates. I'm getting kicked into this process at the end of the year, so I have added interest in the rates this year. Last years ACA rates in comparison to other states were quite reasonable though despite any regulatory control. I wonder if some regulated states are playing cat and mouse games. Meaning the companies throw out high increases knowing they will get pared back.


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Old 09-05-2014, 10:15 AM   #84
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........... I wonder if some regulated states are playing cat and mouse games. Meaning the companies throw out high increases knowing they will get pared back.................
I'm sure that they never even thought of that..........
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Old 09-05-2014, 11:08 AM   #85
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I live in a state (MO) that has zero regulatory control over prices. And there is still zero info coming out for coming years rates. ....
Are you sure about that? Surely there must be product filings and reviews of them by the insurance department - I have never heard of a state where there is not some sort of process.
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Old 09-05-2014, 12:07 PM   #86
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Are you sure about that? Surely there must be product filings and reviews of them by the insurance department - I have never heard of a state where there is not some sort of process.

PB, let me clarify...they have no control over the prices carriers charge. They do have to submit them though. So it's kinda of like a procedure of my dad by law would have had to warn me he was going to beat me hard for misbehavior before he could actually do it. There are procedures and such but not on the only thing that concerns me which is price.


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Old 09-05-2014, 12:08 PM   #87
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Are you sure about that? Surely there must be product filings and reviews of them by the insurance department - I have never heard of a state where there is not some sort of process.
I don't know about health insurance, but in my 23 years working in personal auto insurance there were many "File and Use" states in which the insurers simply filed their rate changes and put them into effect. I never worked on Missouri so I don't know if that was one of the File & Use states for personal auto.
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Old 09-05-2014, 12:28 PM   #88
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Originally Posted by Htown Harry View Post
There is another newly-released set of data derived from analyzing rate filings, this time from the Kaiser family Foundation:

Link to summary here (a link to the full report is at the upper right): Analysis of 2015 Premium Changes in the Affordable Care Actís Health Insurance Marketplaces | The Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation
Analysis of the report from former Washington Post reporter Sarah Kliff:
Some big Obamacare news: premiums will fall in seven big cities - Vox
The Kliff article title is misleading. The KFF analysis found ave Silver premiums were decreasing slightly, but ave Bronze premiums were INcreasing 3.3%. And these were "final" rates for some of the cities but only "preliminary" for others.
http://kaiserfamilyfoundation.files....um-changes.pdf
As the KFF press release itself puts it-
"... it is important to bear in mind that the overall picture may change as comprehensive data across all fifty states becomes available."
Analysis of 2015 Premium Changes in the Affordable Care Act’s Health Insurance Marketplaces | The Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation

Will indeed be interesting to see if KFF or PWC's estimates turn out to be closer to actual 2015 rates.
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Old 09-05-2014, 12:30 PM   #89
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The Kliff article title is misleading. The KFF analysis found ave Silver premiums were decreasing slightly, but ave Bronze premiums were INcreasing 3.3%. And these were "final" rates for some of the cities but only "preliminary" for others.
http://kaiserfamilyfoundation.files....um-changes.pdf
As the KFF press release itself puts it-
"... it is important to bear in mind that the overall picture may change as comprehensive data across all fifty states becomes available."
Analysis of 2015 Premium Changes in the Affordable Care Actís Health Insurance Marketplaces | The Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation

Will indeed be interesting to see if KFF or PWC's estimates turn out to be closer to actual 2015 rates.
And here we are jumping up and down trying to figure all this out now when in a couple months or so it will be known to one and all. Silly.
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Old 09-05-2014, 01:12 PM   #90
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And here we are jumping up and down trying to figure all this out now when in a couple months or so it will be known to one and all. Silly.
And it is silly to be so focused on premium projections when changes in plan design features (inc networks) may be far more important. What good is a decrease in premiums to a heart patient if the only heart surgeons/hospitals left in network have historically worse outcomes
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Old 09-05-2014, 01:17 PM   #91
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And it is silly to be so focused on premium projections when changes in plan design features (inc networks) may be far more important. What good is a decrease in premiums to a heart patient if the only heart surgeons/hospitals left in network have historically worse outcomes

Very true for many people I am sure. Until I have a health problem though I will get the cheapest one within reasonable driving distance even if the facility is a tent with no AC!


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Old 09-05-2014, 02:11 PM   #92
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And it is silly to be so focused on premium projections when changes in plan design features (inc networks) may be far more important. What good is a decrease in premiums to a heart patient if the only heart surgeons/hospitals left in network have historically worse outcomes
Very true. Had we simply gone to single payer that problem would have been eliminated.
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Old 09-05-2014, 02:56 PM   #93
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Very true. Had we simply gone to single payer that problem would have been eliminated.
The specifics would change, but the core patient issue would still be there. Difficulties seeking the best available care are certainly not eliminated by single payer.

Ask too many US vets struggling with the VA.

Or the recent case in UK in which the parents of a child with a brain tumor were arrested under Interpol warrant when they fled to Spain to arrange an expensive treatment for him (proton beam therapy, which is routinely approved by all major US HI carriers).
Ashya King: 'Cruel NHS has not given us the treatment we need', says father of five-year-old with brain tumour who fled to Spain - Home News - UK - The Independent

Or the Newfoundland Premier pursuing cardiac surgery in the US vs Canada-
Canadian official seeks heart surgery in US | UTSanDiego.com

There just ain't no single perfect HC system.
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Old 09-05-2014, 03:04 PM   #94
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Very true. Had we simply gone to single payer that problem would have been eliminated.
Not the network issue, not entirely. In single payer, presumably providers would be permitted to opt out and develop a cash-only practice. If some of the best doctors and facilities went that way, you'd have the same problem.
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Old 09-05-2014, 03:18 PM   #95
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The specifics would change, but the core patient issue would still be there. Difficulties seeking the best available care are certainly not eliminated by single payer.

Ask too many US vets struggling with the VA.

Or the recent case in UK in which the parents of a child with a brain tumor were arrested under Interpol warrant when they fled to Spain to arrange an expensive treatment for him (proton beam therapy, which is routinely approved by all major US HI carriers).
Ashya King: 'Cruel NHS has not given us the treatment we need', says father of five-year-old with brain tumour who fled to Spain - Home News - UK - The Independent

Or the Newfoundland Premier pursuing cardiac surgery in the US vs Canada-
Canadian official seeks heart surgery in US | UTSanDiego.com

There just ain't no single perfect HC system.
Did you cut and paste those from Fox News?

Yes, there is no perfect system, especially in a world where there isn't enough money to go around. The hash we had before ACA was embarrassing. The hash we have now is still somewhat embarrassing, but at least it is a bit more fair. Its clear to me that changing the healthcare system is not done yet in the US. The question is whether we change before or after the boomer pig goes through the healthcare snake.
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Old 09-05-2014, 03:20 PM   #96
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Not the network issue, not entirely. In single payer, presumably providers would be permitted to opt out and develop a cash-only practice. If some of the best doctors and facilities went that way, you'd have the same problem.
There is a real easy solution to that one: thou shalt have no other God than Jahweh. Thou shalt have no other payers than Sam (Uncle).
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Old 09-05-2014, 03:32 PM   #97
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Did you cut and paste those from Fox News?
No.
Those stories have been widely reported by a variety of independent news services.
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Old 09-05-2014, 04:51 PM   #98
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No.
Those stories have been widely reported by a variety of independent news services.
I can guess which ones.

Meanwhile, we are throwing anecdotes against the wall to see which ones emotionally stick rather than looking at statistics. Nice.

Back on topic:

I will be shopping for a new plan next year based on a change in income that will likely boost me out of subsidy range. If at all possible, I will be looking for a Bronze HSA eligible policy with the same insurer (Kaiser). It will be interesting to see both what the premium change on my existing policy is and how that price compares with whatever alternatives I may be presented with.
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Old 09-05-2014, 05:24 PM   #99
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Yes, back on topic. We don't know yet what premiums will be for 2015. Hope for the best but prepare for the worst, so I'm doing some of the leg work now.

During the last enrollment period it was very difficult to get any kind of meaningful information on the insurers networks, their websites were overloaded. Now is a good time to do that and get ahead of the game. It's also a good time to look for the policy documents and call with questions. Despite the efforts to standardize coverage I found some big differences among the insurers. For example, one policy doesn't cover "elective surgery", which I find confusing because inpatient hospital care is one of the 10 essential health benefits,and the policy claims to be ACA compliant.

There will also be new insurers in many markets across the country. As before, price alone won't be the deciding factor.
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Old 09-05-2014, 05:31 PM   #100
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I take it they do not define "elective surgery?" Does this mean they won't pay for a nose job, or they won't pay for, say, gall bladder removal?
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