As More Premium Increases Roll In, CCHF Says ‘Allow State Exchanges to Die’

For Immediate Release
October 19, 2016
 
MEDIA CONTACT:
Hamilton Strategies, 610.584.1096, ext. 104, or  Media@HamiltonStrategies.com
 
As More Premium Increases Roll In,
Citizens’ Council for Health Freedom Says
‘Allow State Exchanges to Die’
 
Covered California Announces Rate Hikes of 57%,While Some Pennsylvanians Will See 33% Increases;This Flawed System Was Never ‘Affordable’
 
 
ST. PAUL, Minn.—California and Pennsylvania might not share weather forecasts or political views, but these two states at opposite ends of the country have something in common. Both recently released information about skyrocketing Obamacare premiums, further evidence that the Affordable Care Act is anything but affordable for most Americans.
 
For more than five years, Citizens’ Council for Health Freedom (CCHF, www.cchfreedom.org) has been predicting the downfall of state exchanges—for these very reasons—costs that couldn’t possibly stay in check because not enough young, healthy people would enroll to sustain the system.
 
Now, these predictions are coming true, and Americans enrolled in Obamacare, as well as patients outside government health care, are paying the price—not just in California and Pennsylvania, but in other states, too.
 
Last week in Minnesota, CCHF’s home state, Gov. Mark Dayton told media that the Affordable Care Act is “no longer affordable” after the state announced premium increases of 50 to 67 percent, as well as the fact that some health plans in the state would put enrollment caps into place. (Read more about CCHF’s take on this news here.)
 
“In Minnesota, it would actually be more cost-effective to let the state exchange die and for patients to use the federal HealthCare.Gov site,” Brase said. “MNsure is just an expensive arm of the federal exchange. The claim that state exchanges provide state control is not true. Nor is it less expensive. The federal government has full control and can commandeer any state exchange. Most states wisely refused to install or fund a state exchange, foreseeing the colossal waste of time and money it would, and now has, become.”
 
In the Golden State, reports Breitbart.com, “Covered California, the state’s Obamacare health exchange, has started mailing notices to 1.3 million subscribers, announcing rate hikes of up to 57 percent for next year,” adding that one of the main reasons Covered California has not collapsed thus far is because 90 percent of subscribers are eligible for subsidies.
 
Then in the Keystone State, reports PennLive.com, premiums for those who purchase individual coverage from the Obamacare online marketplace will increase about 33 percent, according to 2017 rates just approved by the Pennsylvania Insurance Department. The story also lays out a sample plan (the lowest price silver plan) for a 21-year-old non-smoker in the Harrisburg region, provided by Geisinger, which will cost $345 per month in 2017, up from $193 a month this year. A 40-year-old non-smoker will pay $441 per month, up from $247 in 2016. Pennsylvania does not have its own state exchange.
 
“The primary purpose for the exchanges was to redistribute premium dollars from the healthy and young to provide subsidized coverage for people with pre-existing conditions,” Brase added. “The healthy and young have wisely refused to enroll, so the only ones who can afford coverage through Obamacare are those who receive subsidies. Before Obamacare, 35 states had their own high-risk pools for people with pre-existing conditions. Because risk pools were permanently reauthorized last year as minimum essential coverage by the Obama administration in some states, they should be allowed in all states. Then the federal exchange, and all its costs, could also disappear, saving millions for taxpayers and restoring control to the states.”
 
CCHF recently launched The Wedge of Health Freedom (www.JointheWedge.com), where doctors have said ‘no’ to costly and restrictive insurance contracts and government regulations. These Wedge practices, which are located in about 40 states, can be found online in a “map of freedom,” which displays the locations of doctors and other health care professionals around the country, where patients can find care that is affordable, confidential and patient-friendly.
 
CCHF is a national patient-centered health freedom organization existing to protect health care choices, individualized patient care, and medical and genetic privacy rights. For more information about CCHF, visit its web site at www.cchfreedom.org, its Facebook page or its Twitter feed @CCHFreedom. For more about The Wedge of Health Freedom, visit www.JointheWedge.com, The Wedge Facebook page or follow The Wedge on Twitter @wedgeoffreedom.