Quantcast
Published On: Sat, Jun 24th, 2017

Obamacare: Iowa only provider asks for 45% hike in rates

Last month, Medica, the last remaining Obamacare insurer in Iowa announced that it was considering leaving the state’s insurance exchange. Now Medica decided it would stay in the marketplace but would be asking for a steep increase in premiums next year.

From the Des Moines Register:

“When you find yourself as the only ones between people getting access to care and people not getting access to care, your view of the situation becomes very different,” Medica Vice President Geoff Bartsh said in a prepared statement. “We’ve filed with the intent to provide access to insurance for all Iowans, whether they are farmers, small business owners or other individuals who need coverage.”

The relatively small, Minnesota-based carrier told Iowa regulators Monday that in order to stay in the market, they would need to increase premiums by an average of 43.5 percent.

Doug Ommen, the Iowa Insurance Commissioner, has the ability to deny or alter rate requests submitted by Obamacare insurers, but in this case, Medica has the state between a rock and a hard place.

Ommen also worried that the spike in rates could do further damage to the market:

“We appreciate and understand Medica’s desire to provide coverage in all of Iowa’s 99 counties. That is our goal as well,” Ommen said in a prepared statement. “We are concerned that Iowa has hit a point within our market’s collapse that a 43% rate increase will drive healthier, younger, and middle aged individuals out of the market. Iowa’s individual market remains unsustainable and needs a fix from Congress.”

Two other carriers, Aetna and Wellmark Blue Cross & Blue Shield, announced earlier this year they would not participate in the Iowa market in 2018.

This comes just days ahead of the new Senate Obamacare replacement plan, indicative of how bad the market is broken.

photo Will O’Neill via Flickr

photo LaDawna Howard via Flickr

About the Author

Leave a comment

XHTML: You can use these html tags: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>



Recent Posts

Categories

Archives

At the Movies