Obamacare-Friendly Maryland's Insurance Rates Set to Skyrocket

Via Reddit's Libertarian subtopic comes news from health-care giant Kaiser of Obamacare's likely impact on insurance costs in Maryland, "an important state to watch because it has embraced Obamacare’s insurance reforms, setting up its own marketplace."

Some info:

The ACA [Affordable Care Act, a.k.a. Obamacare] prohibits charging sicker members substantially more but allows plans to adjust premiums for age and other factors, within strict limits.

Taking those factors into account, CareFirst premiums for individual plans could rise as high as 150 percent next year for healthy young men and decrease slightly for someone older and sicker, Burrell said.

One current popular CareFirst plan with a $2,700 deductible costs “less than $115 per month” for men under 30, said Mark Hammett, a broker at Kelly & Associates Insurance Group in Hunt Valley, Md....

Which isn't to say that the people getting insurance under the new rates will be shelling out $288 a month for insurance premiums. The more expensive premiums will be heavily subsidized so we'll all be kicking in for the added costs. As a spokesman for Families First said,

“Some people may actually spend much less out of pocket… and end up with a much better product and a much better situation to protect their family from financial devastation from illness,” she said.

Hmm. So we're likely to see massive premium increases for some people while others get better programs that cost less money to the actual users of those programs? Isn't that sort of disconnect between the consumer and the costs they generate one of the main reasons health care costs keep rising?

CareFirst owns about 70 percent of the individual insurance market in Maryland and that seems unlikely to change anytime soon, especially since Obamacare did essentially nothing to create more competition among health-care providers in a given state (indeed, the reform actively discourages it in at least two ways: first, by disallowing shopping for coverage across state lines and second by capping premiums and mandating minimum-level coverage plans). It's also likely that people looking for insurance in the state-run exchange will increase if and when employers drop coverage since it's generally cheaper for them to pay associated fines than keep covering employees.

What about small-employer plans that will be offered via the exchanges next year? The Kaiser article notes that Maryland already caps premiums for small businesses.

Premiums for CareFirst’s small employer plans to be offered on the exchange next year are proposed to rise about 15 percent, Burrell said, mainly because of the rising cost of health care....

Besides CareFirst, Kaiser Permanente, Aetna, UnitedHealthcare, Coventry Health and Evergreen Health Cooperative all filed to offer about 50 individual or small group plans on the exchange.

An Aetna spokesman said proposed premiums for Maryland small group plans would rise between 12 and 16 percent next year. United proposed average small group increases of from 15 to 28 percent, but premium changes could vary widely depending on the plan, said company spokesman Matt Stearns.

Again, recall that deep-blue Maryland is "an important state to watch because it has embraced Obamacare’s insurance reforms, setting up its own marketplace."

Maybe you can't put a price tag on good health. But in Maryland, the cost is going up by double and possibly even triple digits next year.

Read the whole thing.

Related: "Will Obama Tell Young People He's Screwing Them Big Time?"

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  • Almanian!||

    Wow. 150% increase. Doom and collapse are coming quicker than I thought they would. Cool. Everyone try to enjoy the ride down!

  • Ptah-Hotep||

    But, but, but; I thought they repealed the laws of economics when they passed this bill.

  • Almanian!||

    Oh, they're "bending the cost curve" alright...

  • Ptah-Hotep||

    Oh, they're "bending the cost curve" alright...

    Bend it hell, we broke it!

  • Live Free or Diet||

    We finally found where that "Hockey Stick" graph goes!

  • Live Free or Diet||

    I fought the law
    and the - law won!
    I fought the law
    and the - law woooooon!

  • Ptah-Hotep||

    Reality bats last.

  • AlexInCT||

    No wonder that congress is trying to exempt the political class from Obamacare mandates....

  • wareagle||

    what was it that someone here had previously said about foreseeable consequences?

  • Almanian!||

    You know who else's actions had foreseeable consequences...

  • sarcasmic||

    Your mom?

  • sarcasmic||

    Obviously a failure of the free market. The solution is single payer.

  • Bill||

    Every time we enact a new government program, that pesky free market comes in and ruins it.

  • Ted S.||

    Single payer legal care. Because there's no lawyer who does anything worth more than minimum wage.

  • ||

    What are the Jonas Brothers' new CD secrets?

  • Heroic Mulatto||

    The secret? It sucks.

  • Ptah-Hotep||

    The secret? It sucks.

    That is no secret.

  • Heroic Mulatto||

    Tell that to a pre-teen girl.

  • Ptah-Hotep||

    Tell that to a pre-teen girl.

    I did. Luckily she agreed with me.

  • Heroic Mulatto||

    By the way, your forum handle...Egyptologist? Historian of Law? Moorish Science/5 Percenter?

  • Ptah-Hotep||

    Egyptologist? Historian of Law? Moorish Science/5 Percenter?

    Yes.

    Love Egyptology. The Precepts of Ptah-Hotep are also the oldest known "philosophy" in book form. They are well worth the effort to read and understand.

  • Night Elf Mohawk||

    My pre-teen daughter likes Iron Maiden, Seether, Boston, Orianthi, and Sam Cooke. And, well, Kelly Clarkson.

  • Heroic Mulatto||

    If she likes Sam Cooke, tell her to check out Charles Bradley. (When she's older. His songs have been known to produce parthenogenic births in women due to their sheer Soul/R&B-ness.)

  • Night Elf Mohawk||

    Very cool. She likes some of the Motown stuff -- Four Tops, Spinners, some Marvin Gaye -- and this would definitely be worth a listen for her, too.

  • Ted S.||

    Shouldn't Boston be in the "And, well" category?

  • Night Elf Mohawk||

    Boston's first two "albums" are great. The rest of the stuff is crap. She was pretty bummed out when she found out that Brad Delp was dead.

    She likes ELO, which I'd be tempted to put in the "And, well" category but I kind of like some of their stuff too and Jeff Lynne is really good at what he does. This also got her to listen to The Traveling Wilburys and then Roy Orbison, so it's a net positive.

    No Bieber and she makes fun of Taylor Swift, so I'm good with it so far.

  • Ptah-Hotep||

    Sounds like you are doing an excellent job there NEM. Once my own heard Ozzy, Carlos Santana, and John Lee Hooker, the Beib didn't stand a chance. I am still trying to figure out if Ricky Martin is a plus or a minus.

  • Night Elf Mohawk||

    She sings along with Diary of a Madman -- she likes drums and bass, so the drums in the middle were well-liked -- and I can't play Crazy Train loud enough.

    We haven't listened to a lot of John Lee Hooker -- we're in SRV country -- but we probably should.

    She likes Santana, but I think it's more by association with Rob Thomas and Orianthi than standing alone.

  • Ted S.||

    ELO did half of the Xanadu soundtrack. You have to admire their chutzpah.

  • Night Elf Mohawk||

    ELO is kind of a guilty pleasure of mine. I like mostly the older stuff -- Sweet Talkin' Woman, etc -- but Hold on Tight and Calling American are pretty good.

  • sarcasmic||

    My 3yr old calls Nirvana's Incesticide "bouncy music."

    She loves her "bouncy music."

  • itsnotmeitsyou||

    You are obviously an excellent father if your daughter actually knows what a talented musician sounds like. Bravo, sir.

  • Auric Demonocles||

    I sure am glad I can't be given rates related to my statistical expectation of consumed healthcare. That would be pretty awful for me, as a young healthy male.

  • wareagle||

    if we start applying market-based principles to you, then everyone else will want them and before long, they will begin to question the wisdom of their leader-masters and we can't have that.

  • itsnotmeitsyou||

    Don't be silly, Auric. That would be unfair to the poor people who have no impulse control and can't be reasonably expected to make healthy life choices or live with the consequences.

    You wouldn't want to be unfair, now would you?

  • Auric Demonocles||

    Of course not. That's why I said I am glad for this new system. Why should I pay less just for using less? And why should another guy pay more just because he's choosing not to hit the gym with me and just eat donuts instead? It's pretty self explanatory that that would be ridiculously insane teabaggery.

  • Stilgar||

    $288 a month? Thats still $100 cheaper than I pay now with a $2,500 ded. My state sucks.

  • Almanian!||

    As Daughter #1 said when it passed: "Fuck Obamacare and JOe Biden." I don't remember shy she threw in Biden, but I approve.

  • Doctor Whom||

    I saw the article in The Washington Post. If even the self-appointed Obama Minitrue admits it, then it's game over.

  • asd2001f||

    CareFirst owns about 70 percent of the individual insurance market in Maryland and that seems unlikely to change anytime soon, especially since Obamacare did essentially nothing to create more competition among health-care providers in a given state (indeed, the reform actively discourages it in at least two ways: first, by disallowing shopping for coverage across state lines and second by capping premiums and mandating minimum-level coverage plans). 北京德胜门中医院皮肤科http://www.bjlvyou123.com

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