Monday, August 2, 2010

Premiums Rise 20% on Non-group Health Insurance

Source: Kaiser Family Foundation

Recent Premium Increases Imposed by Insurers Averaged 20% for People Who Buy Their Own Health Insurance, Kaiser Survey Finds

People who buy their own insurance report that their insurers most recently requested premium increases averaging 20 percent, according to a new Kaiser survey examining the experiences and views of people who buy health coverage in the non-group or individual market.

Overall roughly three in four people (77 percent) with non-group coverage report facing a premium increase with a current or previous insurer. Most say they paid the increase, but 16 percent of all policyholders say they switched plans, either buying a less expensive policy from their current insurer or switching companies altogether. After these so-called “buy downs” are taken into account, people who faced a premium increase ended up paying 13 percent more than before.

Many of those facing a premium increase who switched to a cheaper policy are now getting less comprehensive coverage than they were before. The survey found that those who switched are more than four times as likely to say their new plan offers worse benefits than their previous plan (49 percent) as they are to say their new plan’s benefits are better (11 percent).

+ Survey of People Who Purchase Their Own Insurance

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