If you wait until next year to purchase a health insurance plan in the individual market, you will likely pay a higher rate than if you choose one by Dec. 31st, 2013. I will mention a few of the factors which will influence next year’s rates.
Currently, personal health plans are medically underwritten…underwriters review one’s health history to assess risks for coverage. Those with the most serious health issues are typically denied coverage. Due to this evaluation process, insurance companies minimize their odds of covering potentially large claims. This means an insurer can offer a lower premium to healthier applicants who meet a certain standard of good health.
As you may know, on Jan. 1, 2014, no one can be denied access to health insurance because they have a serious pre-existing health condition. All major medical health plans will be offered on a “guaranteed issue” basis. Insurance companies will be faced with paying some extremely expensive claims as a result of this situation. To help compensate for this added expense, rates for all new participants will be higher than today’s premiums.
Another reason that rates will be higher in 2014 is due to the new Essential Health Benefits mandate. This requires an insurer to cover 10 benefit categories for all insurance plans starting in 2014. This coverage is likely more extensive than what most American’s currently have. Providing these additional benefits will increase the insurer’s expenses. This added cost will be factored in when the new insurance rates are determined.
Premium subsidies will be available for those of low income, based on a percentage of the Federal Poverty Level. Federal and State Health Insurance Exchanges will make several different levels of coverage available, and their rates will be structured accordingly.
If you would like more details about the impact that the Affordable Care Act may have on your future health care coverage, please read the other articles in my blog regarding healthcare reform. This is an ideal time to review your current health insurance. Decide if you want to renew it, or choose a new, more affordable, individual health plan before 2014 arrives!
AustinHealthPlans.com has nearly 200 different affordable major medical health insurance plans available. Let us give you a free quote for an inexpensive health plan that will suit your particular situation and needs. We offer plans from “A” rated major insurers only. You won’t find lower prices for our plans anywhere else in Texas. Please call us now at: (512) 535-3556 and let us become your independent Texas Health Insurance Agent!