|By Michael L. Diamond, Asbury Park Press, N.J.|
|McClatchy-Tribune Information Services|
Consumers in the Garden State had average premiums of
"It's the underlying cost of care," said
The report was the first look at premiums for consumers who bought policies on the federal exchange, the online marketplace established by the Affordable Care Act, commonly known as Obamacare. And it comes a little more than two months after the law's first open enrollment ended.
How did Horizon cut health insurance premium by 15%?
Obamacare supporters in the state were encouraged by enrollment. More than 160,000 New Jerseyans signed up for private insurance, surpassing expectations.
What's affordable, however, has been a major point of contention. The government offered tax credits to consumers who bought policies on the exchange and made less than four times the poverty level -- about
It was too much to afford, Cetta said, so she is trying to enroll her mother-in-law in
The Affordable Care Act requires insurers to play by the same rules nationwide. They need to spend at least 80 percent of premiums on health care. And they need to cover at least 10 benefits designed to prevent more serious illnesses.
So why did
Before the Affordable Care Act,
Now, the average cost for a silver plan in both states remains virtually the same. But
"Less competition does seem to make a difference," Schwimmer said. "They have a lot more choices and a lot more competition."
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