Health insurance premiums could skyrocket from cost of coronavirus care

Socialist medicine is not cheap.  Covered California is looking at increasing their already high premiums by 40% next year.  Many of those covered by this State run health care insurance do not see the increases—the taxpayers do.  Most who used Covered California get it subsidized, so it does not matter to them.  In the midst of massive economic where a large part of the State Reserves need to be used, the cost of health care will skyrocket.  At the same time the Democrats have added one million illegal aliens to our Medicaid bill.

“Covered California released its findings on what the outbreak means for the nation’s insurers on Monday. Covered California is the state’s marketplace for individual health care coverage under the Affordable Care Act, and provided coverage for about 1.5 million Californians as of February.

The commercial health care market is projected to face anywhere from $34 billion to $251 billion related to testing and treatment for COVID-19, the report states. To make up for those costs, premiums could rise 40% in the individual and employer markets, if the federal government doesn’t intervene.”

With AB 5 killing hundreds of thousands of jobs, technology taking over jobs because the cost of employees may be too much for many jobs, California needs to cut back on social spending, bigoted spending (diversity officers) and cut taxes to stimulate our economy.  Short of that, California many not recover for many years.

Health insurance premiums could skyrocket from cost of coronavirus care

By Felicia Alvarez, Sacramento Business Journal, 3/23/20   

The costs of providing care amid the coronavirus pandemic could cost billions for health insurers, according to a new report by Covered California.

Covered California released its findings on what the outbreak means for the nation’s insurers on Monday. Covered California is the state’s marketplace for individual health care coverage under the Affordable Care Act, and provided coverage for about 1.5 million Californians as of February.

The commercial health care market is projected to face anywhere from $34 billion to $251 billion related to testing and treatment for COVID-19, the report states. To make up for those costs, premiums could rise 40% in the individual and employer markets, if the federal government doesn’t intervene.

The analysis is based on projections that 4 million to 15 million Americans could test positive for the virus, and that 10% to 15% would be hospitalized. The projected cost covers a one-year period.

“Given that insurers will be submitting 2021 rates in May and finalizing them around July 1, congressional action is needed very soon in order to affect 2021 premiums,” said John Bertko, chief actuary for Covered California, in a written statement. Bertko prepared the report after working with external actuaries with expertise in the commercial insurance markets, clinical experts and health insurance plan leaders, according to Covered California.

“While there is a lot of uncertainty with anything related to COVID-19, one thing we can be certain of is that the impact will be significant, and now is the time to take action,” Bertko said.

Without federal action, employers could end up in a situation where they are no longer able to provide affordable coverage, and consumers may drop their health insurance due to cost, according to the report. Small insurers could also risk insolvency.

Covered California is calling on Congress to increase tax credits for those earning under 400% of the federal poverty level and expand subsidies for those earning more than 400% of the federal poverty level.

The agency is also suggesting that the federal government establish a temporary program to limit the costs of COVID-19 for health insurers and self-insured employers.

Covered California took similar actions last week, when it announced a special enrollment period for uninsured individuals who need health coverage during the COVID-19 outbreak. The enrollment period is open until June 30.

“These increased costs could mean that many of the 170 million Americans in the commercial market may lose their coverage and go without needed care as we battle a global health crisis,” said Peter Lee, executive director of Covered California, in a prepared statement. “These are not ‘insurer’ costs — these are costs directly borne by individual Americans in the form of cost-sharing and premiums; these are costs to small and large businesses that are struggling; these are costs to individuals who may avoid needed care.”

Representatives of the California Association of Health Plans, the state’s association for commercial plans, declined to comment on potential premium increases.

“We appreciate Covered California’s analysis, but there are many factors that will go into estimating premiums for 2021 and many unknowns regarding how this crisis will unfold and what actions will be taken,” said Mary Ellen Grant, spokeswoman for the association, in an email.

She added that the “most important” thing at this time is social distancing and for individuals to heed warnings from public health officials.

About Stephen Frank

Stephen Frank is the publisher and editor of California Political News and Views. He speaks all over California and appears as a guest on several radio shows each week. He has also served as a guest host on radio talk shows. He is a fulltime political consultant.

Comments

  1. Really??? says

    I believe it is Iowa, with a population of 3 Million Plus has a cooperative that has PPO, and covers almost 100% of every thing for $50 a month. That is well within the range of most people.

    But then again the Government is All POLITICIANS are too blinded to understand this.

  2. Of course it will be only government that can fix the problems they made in the first place. Their solution always requires more control,more taxes and no accountability.

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