The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services has released preliminary costs for health insurance in the marketplaces opened under the Affordable Care Act.
The marketplaces are slated to open Oct. 1. These numbers are expected to change in the coming months after the marketplaces open, and before the Affordable Care Act goes into effect on Jan. 1.
For the most part, the numbers indicate a decrease in current premium prices and an increase in the number of insurance plans available in each state.
Broadly speaking, there are five categories of coverage under Obamacare: catastrophic, bronze, silver, gold and platinum. Basically, the higher your monthly premium is, the greater your insurance coverage. That should result in smaller out-of-pocket costs for hospitalizations and doctors visits.
Number of qualified premium plans in Austin: 76
Rates for a 27 year-old:
- Lowest catastrophic plan: $109
- Lowest bronze plan: $144
- Lowest silver plan: $169
- Lowest gold plan: $193
Rates for a 27 year-old, with an income of $25,000:
- Lowest bronze plan (after tax credit): $85
- Second lowest silver plan (before tax credit): $205
- Second lowest silver plan (after tax credit): $145
Rates for a family of four rates, with an income of $50,000:
- Lowest bronze plan (after tax credit): $64
- Second lowest silver plan (before tax credit): $741
- Second lowest silver plan (after tax credit): $282
The estimates also predicted the number of health insurance plan choices that will be available. The number ranges from six to 169 plans in the 36 states in which the federal government will operate the marketplace. Among those states, there will be an average of 53 plans available for families. Texans will have access to 54 plans. Austinites will be able to choose from 76.
Eleven other states, and the District of Columbia, will be implementing their own independent health insurance venues. The federal government says the purpose of these open “marketplaces” is to help members of the public navigate the complicated territory of health insurance coverage under the new Affordable Care Act, so that people may compare and shop for individual health plans.