JACKSON, MS (MS Truth Journal): Earlier this month MS Truth Journal reported the average increase of Mississippians’ health insurance premiums under the Affordable Care Act. With President Trump’s Executive Order eliminating Cost Sharing Reductions (a form of government subsidy to insurance carriers), premium costs are expected to increase even more as reported by the Clarion Ledger. Click here for Clarion Ledger Article

The Clarion Ledger article made a passing reference to the separate, continuing subsidies in the form of tax credits to those on the healthcare.gov exchange: “If the subsidies are cut, monthly payments for the majority of the 40,000 Mississippians who receive insurance through the ACA insurance exchange, and make less than 250 percent of the poverty level, should only increase $10-$20, Chaney said. That’s because those folks receive tax credits that are expected to increase alongside the premiums.”

So how do Mississippians’ ACA health plan premium increases and costs compare to the rest of the country? On October 25, 2017 research firm Avalere published the following tables which give at least part of the answer. For more information on these tables, click here.

For the most popular average “Silver” and second-lowest cost Silver plans in the Magnolia State, the research in Table 1 indicates premium costs will increase from $512 to $731 (43%) and $432 to $739 (56%), respectively. Table 2 includes the increases for the less-popular Gold, Bronze, and Platinum plans. A number of other states have lower or higher premium costs and increases. Mississippi seems to fall somewhere in the middle, just below the healthcare.gov average of $743.

Congress continues to debate whether to repeal, replace, revise, or merely “stabilize” the ACA. The most recent version of proposed reform is the “Alexander-Murray ACA Market Stabilization Bill.” What Congress may accomplish is unknown. What is clearly evident is that ACA costs will continue to increase both for premiums paid by the insured, as well as for tax credit subsidies paid by the taxpayer.

— The Editor, MS Truth Journal

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