Obamacare premiums will see huge price variations

Some Americans looking to get health insurance through their state exchanges may be in for sticker shock.

By Aimee Picchi Sep 5, 2013 2:52PM

Man reading leaflet (© Image Source/Getty Images/Jupiterimages/Jupiter Images/Getty)The Affordable Care Act has something in common with real estate: It's all about location, location, location. 

Health insurance premiums offered through state-run exchanges vary wildly, according to a new study from the Kaiser Family Foundation.  

For instance, a 40-year-old single man living in Burlington, Vt., would be charged $413 per month for the second-lowest-cost silver plan, or about 70% more than the $242 it would cost if he lived in Washington, D.C. 

The per-month figures, though, are before government subsidies, which will effectively lower the rate for many people. After the subsidies, rates for both D.C. and Burlington would decline to $193, the foundation found. The study looks at the 17 states, plus D.C., that have already released data on their rates.

The expense of health care insurance under the ACA has been a matter of concern for individuals and businesses worried about skyrocketing costs. Still, the Kaiser Family Foundation said that, on average, premiums are lower than expected. 

Nevertheless, specific groups might get hit with higher costs. For instance, people in good health may see rates spike, according to a report earlier this year from The Wall Street Journal. That analysis said healthy people may find their premiums doubled or even tripled, while those with chronic conditions could see their rates decrease. 

Without the ACA, a 40-year-old single man in Virginia could buy a plan for $63 a month through WellPoint (WLP), The Wall Street Journal found. But the lowest-price plan offered by Obamacare is more than double that -- $170 per month for a 40-year-old single man in Richmond, Va. -- according to Kaiser. After subsidies, that will decline to $110.

Subsidies will also bring down the cost for many families and individuals, although qualifying depends on people making less than 400% of the federal income level for poverty. That equates to $94,000 for a family of four. 

The ACA prohibits insurers from basing pricing on demographic traits such as gender, or from banning people with chronic conditions. But pricing is also based on the promise that a pool of young, healthy consumers will join through the state exchanges, lowering overall costs. 

Follow Aimee Picchi on Twitter at @aimeepicchi.

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Sep 5, 2013 3:19PM
Once again, the responsible citizens are forced to pay for the irresponsible ones, along with a few million illegals.
Sep 5, 2013 4:14PM
Kind of makes me wonder why I bothered to pay attention in high school, work a full time job while putting myself through college for two degrees, and eat bologna sandwiches everyday to save money and try to get ahead.  For my hard work I have the privilege of helping pay for others health insurance (among other things) because they are "less fortunate."  Maybe they should have paid attention in high school and studied something other than advanced basket weaving in college.  Unfortunately, that would have required personal responsibility.

Those of us pulling the wagon are getting tired of everybody jumping on board.  Some of you freeloaders are going to have to get out and start pushing.  You can only spend other people's money for so long.

Sep 5, 2013 3:14PM
Sep 5, 2013 3:58PM
This may be funny if it weren't so true
 be sure to read it all the way through

 tax his land
 tax his bed
 tax the table
 at which he  is fed

 tax his tractor 
 tax his mule
 teach him taxes 
  are the rule

 tax his work 
 tax his pay he works the peanuts anyway

 tax his  cow
 tax his goat
 tax his pants
 tax his coat

 tax his ties
 tax his shirt
 tax his work
 tax his dirt

 tax his tobacco
 tax is drink
 tax and if he tries to think

 tax His cigars
 tax his beers
 if he cries
 tax his   tears

 tax his car tax his gas. find other ways to tax his A$$

  Tax all he has, then let him know, that you won't be done until he has no dough

Sep 5, 2013 3:32PM

so peoples insurance is going to double in some cases.  thats a 100% increase!


i thought it was going to save $2500 a year for people?  still waiting for a news article where this is happening.  you would think the media would be looking for those stories too but i guess there arent any.  gee i wonder why?


"train wreck"  hopefully america wakes up.  obamas legacy isnt looking too good.

Sep 5, 2013 3:52PM
"The per-month figures, though, are before government subsidies, which will effectively lower the rate for many people." Well, then, who pays for these government subsidies that the slackers will get? That's right working tax payer guy.....me and you....me and you. 
Sep 5, 2013 3:28PM

bwahahaha.   enjoy paying those higher insurance bills middle class america.


you voted for it

Sep 5, 2013 3:12PM

Sure am glad I lived a healthy life and took care of myself so I can have the opportunity to pay for those that did not.

Eat right, exercise, didn't smoke, always kept health insurance.

What a waste of a life!  Could have been having fun all along with the rest of the shlubs.

Sep 5, 2013 4:10PM

"we have to pass it to see what's in the bill..."


I'm still laughing.

Sep 5, 2013 3:34PM

i cant wait till people realize they will be forced to have insurance and the irs will be enforcing it.  sure the educated already know this and those oppose obamacare.


the other 60%+ are clueless.  cant wait till jan 1st! when they might finally wake up.

Sep 5, 2013 4:11PM
And again, WHO is shocked by any of this??????????
Sep 5, 2013 4:09PM
I feel sorry for the younger people, such as my two kids (28 & 31).  Obamacare will be a tax on them to help support the old and ill.  Combine that with Social Security they will never see, and it is sad what we are doing to them.
Sep 5, 2013 4:16PM
The people of the United States have spoken................Now they are paying out the butt for it.

I bet you guys wish a lot more of people in DC(you have to pass the bill to see what is in it) had and gave you a chance to read ObamaCare now.

Sep 5, 2013 4:18PM
TRAIN WRECK..........coming to your neighborhood soon. Wait until you see the register receipt on this one. The stimulus will look like chump change. Of course, when the smoke clears from the smoldering rubble, he will be out pulling in millions from yet more empty b.s. speeches
Sep 5, 2013 4:40PM
What did you expect from the people who preach wealth redistribution?
Sep 5, 2013 4:26PM
In CA a healthy single male will pay more than $600 per month under the ACA. Hardly what any reasonable person would call "affordable". Assume 15% annual increases and the premiums will eat up the entirety of one's paycheck within a few short years. This is an improvement over doing nothing???? I don't think so...
Sep 5, 2013 4:21PM
remember your local union guy also who, lobbied, voted and pushed this through thinking he was going to be exempt. Well there not happy now either....  so if you need work done go with a non-union company.
Sep 5, 2013 4:38PM
We've got to get together and stop this train wreck! There's got to be a much better, far less complicated solution. The sooner we stop Obamacare from happening, the better. It is already damaging our country, businesses, and citizens. The damage will grow as time passes and will be very difficult to turn-around once it takes effect.
Sep 5, 2013 4:12PM
I heard Muslims will be exempt from paying for Osama Care because their religion does not believe in insurance, looking at it as an "evil", non-Allah, type thing.....Is this true? If it is, I am changing religions,,,,,not that I had one before
Sep 5, 2013 4:55PM
Why do citizens have to prove they have insurance when people don't have to prove they are citizens?
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