Study: Obamacare Results in Premium Increase in 45 States

Kevin Glass

10/17/2013 10:12:00 AM - Kevin Glass
A comprehensive 50-state study has found that insurance premiums will increase under the first year of Obamacare in 45 of 50 states. This finding flies in the face of President Obama's promise that his health care overhaul would cause premiums "for the typical family" to fall by $2500.

The study, done by the Heritage Foundation, uses a model to estimate what premium rates have been previously and what the new rates would be, using census data and averages provided by the Department of Health and Human Services. "Individuals in most states will end up spending more on the exchanges," policy analyst Drew Gonshorowski writes. He continues:

Many individuals will experience sticker shock when shopping on the exchanges. It is clear that many policies and cross-subsidization within Obamacare will lead to upward shifts in premiums. These policies include the health insurance tax, essential health benefit and actuarial value regulations, less allowed age variability in premiums, community rating, and guaranteed issue. However, real uncertainty, amidst a rocky start, surrounds what enrollment will look like in the exchanges.

The Heritage authors find that there are only five states in which premiums will decrease: Colorado, New Jersey, New York, Ohio, and Rhode Island - a result of those states already having "already over-regulated insurance markets that led to sharply higher premiums," Gonshorwoski writes. The model also breaks the premium changes down by demographic. Americans who are shopping for their whole family on the exchanges will see more modest increases, and young Americans will see the most extreme increases. In 11 states, the Heritage study finds, people who are age 27 shopping for an individual policy can expect to see double the premiums they would have seen last year.

Here's the full table of Heritage's findings: