May 15th was the deadline for health insurance carriers in Colorado to submit rates for new plans that will be sold in the individual and small group markets in Colorado, both in and outside of the exchange/marketplace (Connect for Health Colorado). Much has been said about today – May 22nd – being the date when those rates are available to the public, and there has been a lot of anticipation about getting to find out what health insurance premiums are going to look like next year in Colorado. We know that in the Pacific Northwest, rates have come in lower than expected, attributed partially to the “heavy competition” in the WA and OR marketplaces (9 and 12 insurers, respectively). Colorado has even more competition than that, with 19 different carriers submitting rates for plans to be sold through Connect for Health Colorado and on the open market (I’ve seen other reports that say 17 carriers, but either way, it will be a robustly competitive market – just as we’ve always had in Colorado).
There has been much speculation about what the new rates will look like. 9News did a piece last week that highlighted the concerns that rates – particularly in the individual market – could be much higher next year. Over the last year or so, in talking with knowledgeable representatives from the various health insurance carriers (who are themselves talking with knowledgeable actuaries), we’ve heard predictions that range from rate decreases for older policy-holders to rates more than doubling for younger insureds… and just about everything in between. So we are very curious to see how things look once the DOI releases rates.
Today’s the day that those rates are scheduled to be made public, but I doubt that things will be particularly clear anytime soon […]