Insurance Rates for Covered CA Health Are Here!

Kelley-Jensen2Covered CA has released Insurance Rates for the new health insurance plans.

What are Covered CA Insurance Rates?. Are they final, what information do I need before I start shopping for health insurance, and when can I start shopping?

Yes there are now average figures to give you an idea of what health insurance premiums will cost you every month, starting 2014. VERY rough average price ranges for an individual health plan are:

21 year old, with subsidy 21 year old, without subsidy 40 year old, with subsidy 40 year old, without subsidy
Catastrophic Plan N/A $136 N/A N/A
Bronze Plan $0 $172 $0 $219
Silver Plan $44 $216 $40 $276
Gold Plan Rates not available Rates not available Rates not available Rates not available
Platinum Plan Rates not available Rates not available Rates not available Rates not available

Important things to know:

1)    What you will pay depends on four things:

a)     Zip code – the rates are different by region, even within states .

b)    Your age – the rates will be age banded, and those under 30 have a catastrophic plan option (see below).

c)     Smoker vs. Non-smoker – smokers are rated higher, so you will be asked that information on insurance applications.

d)    Your estimated income for 2014 – this is one factor used to determine whether you qualify for subsidy (premium assistance credits).

2)    There are 4 main types of health insurance plans to choose, named after metals, plus a catastrophic plan.  Basically, the higher the metal, the more premium you will pay monthly, but the less out of pocket expenses you pay when you use the insurance.

a)     Catastrophic ONLY available to those under 30, a catastrophic plan is for a healthy young adult that will only see a doctor because of an emergency.  Catastrophic plans do provide 3 primary care doctors visits a year, and comply with essential health benefits, but those benefits generally do not begin until the individual has contributed the cost sharing high deductible limit of $6250 in 2014 for self-only coverage.  Catastrophic plans are not eligible for premium assistance credit.

b)    Bronze level –essential health benefits with 60% costs paid by the health plan. Bronze plans are eligible for premium assistance credit.

c)     Silver level – essential health benefits with 70% costs paid by the health plan.

d)    Gold level – essential health benefits with 80% costs paid by the health plan.

e)     Platinum level – essential health benefits with 90% costs paid by the health plan.

3)    Insurance Carriers offering plans through Covered CA are a mix of major insurers and smaller insurance companies.  Each carrier went through extensive state and federal requirements, so they all offer good choices for consumers in the exchange. 

4)    If you do not qualify for subsidy (premium assistance credit), you do not have to use the exchange or pick a plan offered through the exchange. How do you qualify for subsidy (premium assistance credit)?

5)     The rates released are for monthly premiums, the amount you pay every month to keep your health insurance active.   These rates DO NOT INCLUDE cost-sharing amounts that you will pay out of pocket when you use your health insurance, so consider how often you go to the doctor when picking a plan.

6)    Agents can help you understand all of the numbers, run quotes for you, recommend plans and assist with subsidy paperwork.  If you find it confusing and overwhelming to go directly to the exchange, do not hesitate to call an agent  Their services are free to consumers.

 

Click here for links to more information about health care reform http://www.health-reform-info.com/  and Covered CA http://www.covered-california.net/# .

 

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