Posted by Curt on 21 January, 2017 at 11:31 am. 1 comment.


Washington Free Beacon:

The average deductible for a silver plan through the Affordable Care Act, one of the law’s most popular health insurance plans, is projected to jump 20 percent to $3,703, according to a report from Avalere Health.

Rep. Tom Price (R., Ga.), the nominee to lead the Department of Health and Human Services, said at his confirmation hearing that while many individuals have coverage through Obamacare, some of them are not getting the care they need because they cannot afford their deductible.

“I get calls almost weekly from my former fellow physicians who tell me that their patients are making decisions about not getting the care that they need because they can’t afford the deductible,” Price said.

“If you are an individual making $40,000 and $50,000 per year, and your deductible is $6,000 or $12,000 for a family—which is not unusual on the exchanges—you may have an insurance card, it might have a wonderful name of an insurance company, but you can’t have the care because you can’t afford the deductible,” he said. “People are denying themselves the care that they need.”

The report found that out-of-pocket costs are expected to rise in other ways next year.

On average, co-insurance for specialty drugs on silver plans is set to increase from 34 percent to 37 percent. More silver plans will charge co-insurance for specialty drugs as well. In 2017, 84 percent of silver plans will charge for the drugs, up from 74 percent in 2016.

Half of silver plans will charge more than 30 percent co-insurance for specialty drugs, compared to 36 percent of silver plans in 2016.

In addition to higher deductibles and out-of-pocket costs, the Obamacare exchanges will offer fewer preferred provider organizations, which offer a wider network of providers and cover more out-of-network services.

In 2014, 52 percent of plans on the Obamacare exchanges were by preferred provider organizations. In 2017, that number is projected to decline to 31 percent.

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