Insurers: 2015 exchange rates likely to spike

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State insurance officials are preparing to release figures next week on how much health plans will cost under the Affordable Care Act for 2015, and rate increases seem inevitable as insurers say their new consumers are older and sicker than anticipated.

Top executives at Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Florida and Cigna said rate increases are likely but declined specifics. Humana proposed an average 14.1 percent increase for its HMOs, which the company said was driven by factors including increased prescription drug costs and doctor and hospital reimbursements. However, Molina has proposed an 11.6 percent average rate decrease.

Critics of so-called “Obamacare” warned of huge rate increases to signal the law isn’t working. But rates have risen as much as 20 or 30 percent in recent years.

Republished with permission of the Associated Press