Thousands of consumers will be affected by higher health insurance premiums
Several thousand consumers in South Carolina are likely to see their health insurance premium increase in 2016. The majority of rate increases are expected to be seen by those enrolling in the state’s insurance exchange, where insurers are looking to recover from financial losses by raising premiums. In some cases, consumers may be paying hundreds of dollars more for their health insurance policies. This may place many people under a great deal of financial pressure, which may drive some consumers to abandon their insurance coverage.
Some insurers are opting out of the state’s health insurance exchange, focusing on other markets
While some insurers are raising premiums, others are leaving the state’s insurance exchange entirely. Consumer’s Choice and Assurant Health are exiting the state’s health insurance exchange, refusing to renew policies for those that want coverage in 2016. Instead, the companies will be focusing on other markets. Blue Cross, Blue Choice, and Aetna will still offer coverage through the state’s exchange, but these policies will have higher premiums.
Higher premiums may lead some consumers to abandon their insurance coverage
Higher premiums may dissuade consumers from acquiring insurance coverage, but federal and state officials are advising against this. Those without health insurance will be hit with fines from the federal government, per the Affordable Care Act. Next year, the fines that uninsured consumers will have to pay will grow, placing more people under greater financial pressure, unless they have active health insurance coverage.
Insurers are raising premiums to accommodate the costs associated with the Affordable Care Act
Insurers have cited the provisions of the Affordable Care Act as one of the factors contributing to higher health insurance premiums. The law requires insurers to spend more money on improving health care and providing better benefits to consumers, which has become an expensive issue for many companies. With the law allowing millions of consumers to obtain health insurance coverage, insurers are also being faced with increasingly frequent claims payouts. In order to recover from financial losses, insurers are raising premiums.