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August 19, 2013 04:17 PM UTC

Mythbusters: Rate Shock

  • by: CCHI

(Promoted by Colorado Pols)

The myth of rate shock continues to be just that…a myth.
Colorado Consumer Health Initiative

On Friday, the Division of Insurance released the final rates for health insurance plans in 2014, and Coloradans will have a robust marketplace with strong competition that should combat increases in premiums going forward. Some had raised fears of increased rates, or “rate shock” in 2014, but we’re just not seeing that here in Colorado. While these are new plans with new coverages, these finalized rates confirm that Colorado consumers will have more access to affordable coverage—and financial assistance will help Coloradans get covered and see their doctor without unpredictable costs.

The new rates vary quite a bit based on a person’s age and geographic location, but all Coloradans will be able to choose from at least several insurance carriers and different levels of coverage. For example, in Fort Collins rates for silver level plans for 40-year-olds ranges from $232.91 to $500.62 dollars a month.

There are more affordable options too. Bronze level plans offer cheaper premiums in exchange for slightly less robust coverage and start at just $176.89 a month in Fort Collins. Plus, Coloradans purchasing these plans still qualify for financial assistance.

Coloradans under 30 have the option to purchase catastrophic plans to protect them from enormous medical bills. These plans are available starting at $135.57 for a 27-year-old. 

Before Obamacare, going the bare-bones routes on health insurance could still leave you very exposed to astronomical medical bills. Health insurance isn’t very helpful if you still go bankrupt is it? With new plans with better coverage, all Coloradans have access to better plans at a more affordable cost. 

But these are not the rates that the majority of Coloradans will pay. Many consumers who purchase plans in Connect for Health Colorado will be eligible for upfront financial assistance to help purchase health insurance. Here is a breakdown of how the subsidies might work.

Projected tax credits for lowest cost silver level plan for a 40-year-old in Ft. Collins:

Projected tax credits for highest cost silver level plan for a 40-year-old in Ft. Collins:

The plans sold in Connect for Health Colorado, Colorado’ new marketplace, will provide better coverage to Colorado consumers and small businesses than plans that are available today. And, with financial assistance available to help make plans more affordable, consumer will be able to find plans that best fit their needs instead of only worrying about costs. 

Safe to say that thy myth of rate shock:

You can see the complete summaries from Colorado’s Division of Insurance for yourself here:


For more on Colorado Health Policy topics:


10 thoughts on “Mythbusters: Rate Shock

  1. While those of us who already are covered through work won't see any changes, this is great news for folks who are uninsured. Forty year olds paying $43 to $363 out of pocket (depending on income) for health coverage is pretty darn affordable for a product that can prevent bankruptcy and promote good health. Thanks Obamacare!

    1. Actually, you should see some insurance rate relief. 

      (1) If 15% are uninsured, then you are presently subsidizing them through cost shifting. Hospitals charge $50 aspirins to cover people using the emergency room and not paying. 

      (2) Transparency in medical billing will allow everyone including insurance companies to comparison shop.

  2. Hurray for the 40+ crowd. Now what about the 50+ crowd on the individual market? I have seen no information on those rates. And your link doesn't show figures for that category either.

    One of the conscessions made to insurers when negotiating the Affordable Care Act was to be able to charge higher premiums for smokers (I don't smoke) and 50+ on the individual market. My husband and I are in that category and on the individual market. And we make too much to qualify for subsidies but are barely making it as it is. I am very concerned that we will are going to fall into that crack that will not be able to afford coverage. 

    While I support this healthcare reform, it probably won't help me and I worry about my family. Please wake up and support Single Payer.


  3. Bit confused.

    Has healthcare become more efficient/affordable or are certain consumers receiving more subsidy/redistribution?

    Never the less I will be attempting to find lower rates because the teaser rates and 30% annual premium increases that I have been experiencing are unacceptable.

    Juts the fact that health care can lead to bankruptcy should sound every alarm you may have…


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