Healthy? Obamacare may triple your premium

Much higher rates for this group could be the impact of the insurance overhaul's aim to cover the chronically ill.

By Aimee Picchi Jul 1, 2013 12:00PM

Senior couple shopping in supermarket (© moodboard, the Agency Collection, Getty Images)The Affordable Care Act is designed to place health care within reach of all Americans, but the law may end up making insurance more costly for healthy people. 


A review of proposed health care plans across eight states shows premiums for those in good health may double or even triple under Obamacare, while costs for people with chronic conditions will likely decrease, The Wall Street Journal reports. 


Take the case of a 40-year-old single nonsmoker. Under the new law, he could take insurance on a "bronze" plan that covers 60% of medical costs and charges premiums of about $200 a month in most states surveyed in the study. Yet today, he could get coverage for far less.


Under a WellPoint (WLP) plan offered in Virginia via Anthem, for example, he could find a plan for only $63 per month, which covers half of medical costs. 


"If a person in 2013 has a choice of buying a Chevrolet or a Cadillac health plan and in 2014 they can only buy a Cadillac, . . . are they going to be upset? I think the answer is yes," Bob Laszewski, a Virginia health care consultant, told the newspaper. 


Of course, the study presents one specific case -- a healthy consumer in Richmond, Va. -- while costs could vary considerably by state. The lowest-cost plan offered on an exchange in Nashville, Tenn., for example, is now pegged at $149, or 23% less than the $193 monthly premium charged in Richmond. 


Still, the findings aren't likely to win over any new fans of the health care insurance overhaul, which is already unpopular with Americans. A recent survey from CNN/ORC International found that 54% of Americans oppose the legislation, with most of those saying they feel it's too liberal.


But aside from politics, the overhaul's costs are also weighing on the minds of consumers and business owners. Regal Entertainment Group (RGC) said it's cutting hours to avoid providing health insurance for thousands of nonsalaried employees. 


So who will benefit from the new plans? Most likely, chronically ill consumers who would otherwise face either extremely expensive plans or even fail to find an insurer willing to cover them. Under the overhaul, plans must be available to all Americans, no matter what their health. 


As of now, much of the real prices associated with Obamacare are still unknown. When the health care exchanges roll out in October, the ultimate costs to consumers will become clearer. 


Follow Aimee Picchi on Twitter at @aimeepicchi. 


More on moneyNOW

1133Comments
Jul 1, 2013 12:26PM
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And so the responsible will continue to be forced to pay for the irresponsible.  God forbid, people who make bad choices should suffer any consequences.  This is just another scheme to reduce us all to the lowest common denominator.

More government isn't the solution to our problems.  More government IS the problem.

Jul 1, 2013 12:40PM
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Well..., SOMEBODY has to pick up the bill for all the non-insured losers and loafers that are the Democrats power base.  The only chance this country has to save itself is to remove the vote from all non-taxpaying citizens.  If you don't contribute anything, why should you have a voice in how it's spent?
Jul 1, 2013 12:12PM
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So my reward for not smoking, not drinking, eating healthy and working out 4X a week is higher health insurance premiums?  Sounds about right, after all, folks like me need to pay for those not equally advantaged. 
Jul 1, 2013 12:46PM
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Really who didn't see this coming, I think all the idiots that voted for Osama should pay the extra cost of health care.
Jul 1, 2013 12:45PM
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Don't Blame Me I voted for an American, not a socialist.!

Jul 1, 2013 12:13PM
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A penalty for being healthy - great incentive to get our country to be more health conscious. 
Jul 1, 2013 12:44PM
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Well, 90% of those that voted NOBAMA into office are unemployed, lazy azzes that smoke (cigs,pot,crack),drink alcohol and do nothing but sit around eating junk food "purchased" w/ their food stamps. And I'm sure none of them exercise. So, this is what WE get.
Jul 1, 2013 12:10PM
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when government gets involved prices rise. same thing happened with education.
Jul 1, 2013 12:53PM
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My biggest problem is I don't like people who pay NOTHING in getting better care than the workers who have to continue paying their share & others. It especially seems bad that illegal aliens get free health care.
Jul 1, 2013 12:40PM
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Dear Aimee, Thank you from waking up from your liberal nap! We all knew that government controlled health care was going to cost more, that's why they lied and called it the Affordable Care Act.
Jul 1, 2013 12:43PM
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And this is a surprise to anyone ! ! ! ! ! !  !

 

This horrible law is going to take us all down into financial ruin ! ! !

Jul 1, 2013 12:35PM
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the cost will ALWAYS increase when the government is involved.
Jul 1, 2013 12:28PM
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"So who will benefit the most from the new plans, the chronically ill..."

In many cases we will be rewarding those who did the least to be healthy and penalizing those that did the most to maintain health. 



Jul 1, 2013 1:02PM
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Of course, again, this will not be the case for those who created and will enforce the law.  It's just what's "best" for us peons. 

 

People who voted for Obama should foot the bill for this garbage law.

Jul 1, 2013 12:55PM
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How's the Obama thing working for you now?  The liberals just keep sucking the life out of the working class.  The liberals are so good at that they do...they are now taking from the USA poor and giving it to the illegals.  Just gives me a warm fuzzy feeling.  How about you?
Jul 1, 2013 12:46PM
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So middlers premiums have doubled or tripled and the rich now pay an additional health tax so we can reward the poor or work-less people of our society with Free or Subsidized healthcare?  Tell me again what was wrong with Medicaid for the poor?  Ya know Medicaid whereby the hospital corporations took losses to help pay for the poor?  The economics of the democratic party are truly stupid.  
Jul 1, 2013 12:50PM
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Once again, it pays to be poor, work-less and irresponsible in the land of Obama.  If you are responsible Barry just doesn't like you...get used to it, the 47% is growing rapidly as it should since that is where all the government incentives are.
Jul 1, 2013 1:04PM
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But we were told no changes in your existing plans ....Anyone remember that lie?
Jul 1, 2013 12:35PM
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the cost will ALWAYS increase when the government is involved.
Jul 1, 2013 12:45PM
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Government insurance should be required for catastrophic only, as part of a payroll deduction. Other coverage should be optional from zero to 100, depending on the risks a person is willing to take.
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