This comes after a year of rate increases that ranged up to 25 percent for those groups -- people who work for a small business or who purchase health policies directly from an insurance company or from the government's health exchange created through the Affordable Care Act, called HealthCare.gov.
But despite the increases, many people won't pay higher premiums each month because federal subsidies and tax credits often pick up the additional costs.
Nonetheless, health insurance plans now have yearly out-of-pocket costs that can range up to
"The rates that were submitted were actually less than the companies could have submitted, said
"The companies were justified in their rate increases and could have asked for more."
Nationwide, when the Affordable Care Act went into effect, insurance companies underestimated how sick consumers would be who purchased coverage. And companies, under the Affordable Care Act, can only calculate a person's insurance premium using the individual's age, location and tobacco use.
For people with family plans, the size of the family and ages of each family member also factor in.
Hermes said insurance companies also saw an uptick in the number of people who purchased insurance during the height of a serious illness and dropped the insurance after treatment.
"We're not the only state that is experiencing this, "she said. "It's a nationwide phenomenon."
Large employers saw big hikes
Large employers generally have more leverage to negotiate rates with the insurance companies compared to individuals or small businesses.
Because of that, the
Employees of large companies typically don't find out the cost of their health insurance plans until later in the fall. Last year, many companies with more than 100 full-time employees saw rate hikes of around 15 to 20 percent.
Three companies will provide individual plans in
A silver lining in
Other states are grappling with gaps in coverage in rural areas where insurance companies pulled out of the market and left counties without any health insurance options, or with only one plan to purchase.
"We're working really hard to keep the insurers in
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