By Travis Perry │ Kansas Watchdog
OSAWATOMIE — Good news: Kansas landed in the top 10 in a recent study conducted by the conservative Heritage Foundation! Bad news: It’s for massive insurance premium hikes because of Obamacare.
Kinda puts a damper on things, huh?
As I said, before dashing your optimism with harsh reality, Kansas is among the top 10 states to possibly see the largest premium increases following the rollout of the federal health care exchange, according to a recent report from Heritage’s Center for Data Analysis. In a nutshell, the report states Obamacare health premiums available to Kansans will be higher than existing policies.
According to the Heritage report, the average premium for a 27-year-old Sunflower State resident will rise from $87.40 to $200.14, a massive 129 percent bump. This gives Kansas the unfortunate privilege of boasting the sixth-highest increase for young people nationwide.
The news gets slightly better for other groups, but not by much. Average premiums for a 50-year-old adult could increase from $198 to $341.08 (72.3 percent increase), while a family of four may see an increase from $553.92 to $676.05 (22 percent increase).
“Many families and individuals will face this reality as they apply for coverage, and the implications of experiencing sticker shock are important to consider if enough people choose not to sign up for coverage for various reasons,” policy analyst Drew Gonshorowski wrote in the Oct. 16 report.
The massive increase in premiums for young people should be especially concerning, as they’re the one group Obamacare can’t afford to do without. The successful implementation of the Affordable Care Act depends heavily on the young and healthy signing up to help pay for the elderly and infirm.
It’s important to note the Heritage study compares premium prices straight-up, not including government subsidies designed to decrease the cost to low-income individuals and families.
“This analysis represents the change in unsubsidized rate levels,” Gonshorowski wrote. “The purpose of this research is to provide further details on the changing premium levels across the country.”
Contact Travis Perry at firstname.lastname@example.org, or follow him on Twitter at @muckraker62. Like Watchdog.org? Click HERE to get breaking news alerts in YOUR state!
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