Connecticut residents could be seeing increases in the double digits.
Although the health insurance rates in Connecticut are on their way up, and the percentage by which they increase will likely be in the double digits, insurers are pointing out that it is not the Affordable Care Act that is behind this additional expense, but it is actually due to the rising cost of medical products and services.
Insurers are seeing more expensive claims, which is driving coverage prices upward.
One example of higher health insurance premiums will be for people with plans through Aetna, which has recently received the approval it required for an increase of 12.6 percent to their small group plans. This was granted following its initial request for a 14 percent increase, which is just a hair below the new maximum threshold of 15 percent that requires a public hearing to proceed.
Similarly, other health insurance companies will also be upping their premiums.
ConnectiCare and Anthem are both waiting for the rulings from the state based on their own requests for rate hikes of 13.5 percent and 13.8 percent, respectively. Together, these three large plans will be affecting approximately 120,300 employees as well as their families.
Although the Affordable Care Act is one of the reasons that the insurers claim that increases will be required – particularly because of the new benefits for women’s preventive health – this represents only a small fraction of the total justification of the rising cost of coverage.
Instead, the overwhelming reason behind the increasing rates is medical costs, according to all three of these insurers. They have each stated that it is simply a matter of expense from providers that are raising their own prices, as well as the fact that their policyholders are using medical services more regularly. Therefore, as more people are seeking care, this is driving up the number of claims and it is becoming more expensive to insure them.
A spokesperson from Aetna health insurance, Susan Millerick, explained that “People are accessing more services and hospitals, doctors and labs are charging us more,” and this is what primarily explains the need to increase premiums.