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Covered California Q&A

Covered California and Obamacare related questions from consumers, employers and agents are answered by Phil Daigle with the best information available at the time. Archived entries may no longer be accurate as the Covered California and Obamacare knowledge-base is evolving quickly. TO REQUEST A PERSONAL RESPONSE INCLUDE EMAIL ADDRESS.


Will health insurance rates continue to increase?

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Question: How do you think all this health insurance reform change will impact our premiums? I do understand that you can only give me an opinion, and please allow yourself to speculate if you have to, but the bottom line is that most people I know are just worried about the economical impact of this change in their budgets, and we would like to know what possible scenario are we going to be confronting. From HealthcareShopper customer, Renee Sanudo

Answer: Great question, Renee, I'm sure many of our customers have been wondering the same thing. The quick answer is, yes, health insurance rates will continue to go up. Health plan premiums are a symptom, not a cause of the problem. The cause of high health insurance premiums is high health care costs. State insurance regulators have no control over that, nor over the administrative costs of the insurers. If insurance company profits are abusive, then regulators can pare back profits to a reasonable level. The problem is that insurance company profits are an almost undetectable portion of our $2.5 trillion national health expenditures. Dramatically reducing insurer profits will not even appear as a footnote in the report of our health care spending.

Unfortunately, the health insurance industry has been and will continue to be ineffective in controlling rising costs. The government must provide the solutions to rising costs, but under the reform model approved by Congress and the President, there are no effective solutions.

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