Kentucky: PRELIMINARY 2020 ACA Exchange Premium Rate Changes: 5.0% increase

This Just In from the Kentucky Insurance Commissioner's office:

Proposed Insurance Rates Submitted to DOI for Review

Rates Subject to Review

Frankfort, Ky. (June 25, 2019) – Insurance Carriers have submitted proposed rates to the Department of Insurance (DOI) for Kentucky’s 2020 individual and small group markets. Anthem Health Plans of Kentucky, Inc. (Anthem) filed requests for 13 different plans to be offered on the Exchange with a proposed average rate increase of 12%. CareSource Kentucky Co. requested an average rate decrease of 4.5% for 12 different plans to be offered on the Exchange. This decrease follows the 19.4% rate increase approved last year for the 12 plans it offered. The submitted rates are subject to review by the Department.

“We are pleased that both insurers are committed to continue offering health insurance plans in the Kentucky individual market,” said Insurance Commissioner Nancy G. Atkins. Following a thorough examination by experienced DOI analysts and retained actuaries, the Department plans to complete the review of the proposed rates by August 2019. Additionally, any service area expansion by either carrier will be finalized at the same time. While rates continue to rise due to the Affordable Care Act, the Department continues to pursue innovative ways to provide quality, affordable healthcare for Kentuckians.

“From our initial review, it appears that the popular silver and bronze plans offered by both insurers receive either a much smaller average increase or comprise the majority of the decreases when compared to other plans”, added Commissioner Atkins. “Over 90% of the participants select one of these plans, and we anticipate this trend to continue.”

Approximately 84,620 Kentuckians purchased individual health insurance plans during the 2018 open enrollment period. Plans can be purchased through the federal exchange (healthcare.gov) or directly from each participating insurer.

Open enrollment for the 2020 plan year begins November 1, 2019.

The preliminary 2020 rate filings are available online on the DOI website.

The "2018" above confused me for two reasons: First, because that's the number who selected policies during the 2019 Open Enrollment Period; the 2018 number was 89,569. I'm assuming they said "2018" because that's when the Period actually occured? Still, confusing wording.

Secondly, that makes it sound as though 100% of Kentucky's ACA individual market enrollment occurred on-exchange, which I find difficult to believe, especially with silver loading in force.

In any event, the total effectuated enrollment stands at 81,402 mid-2019, which suggests a mere 4% attrition rate if you divide that into the 84,620 figure, supporting my contention that they didn't include off-exchange enrollees in that number.

In any event, the weighted average rate increase is 5.0% for the Individual market and 11.5% for the Small Group market.