California Healthline: Federally Run Insurance Exchanges Likely To See Lower Premiums

Some health policy analysts are predicting that 2014 premium rates for individual-market health plans offered through federally run exchanges under the Affordable Care Act could be lower than expected, similar to those announced in some state-operated exchanges, Modern Healthcare reports (Block, Modern Healthcare, 7/25).

Last week, Obama touted a new HHS report that found the lowest cost plan in the individual market among 10 surveyed states and the District of Columbia would be about $320 per month, or 18% lower than previous HHS and Congressional Budget Office estimates

However, the HHS report did not include data for plans in the 34 federally run exchanges, according to a group of seven Republican House and Senate committee leaders. The lawmakers sent a letterto HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius this week asking her to release premium rate data from insurers applying to participate in those exchanges. They cited a separate report indicating that premium rate data for plans in the 34 exchanges would not be publicly released until September (California Healthline, 7/19).

According to Modern Healthcare, states with federally run exchanges have until July 31 to submit premium rate data for HHS approval. HHS is required to notify insurers by Sept. 4 of their application status, according to Caroline Pearson, vice president of the health reform practice at Avalere Health.

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