SIOUX FALLS, SD -
Despite the political grandstanding over Obamacare in Washington, uninsured Americans will still be able to enroll in health insurance plans under the Affordable Care Act beginning next Tuesday.
Today, the U. S. Department of Health and Human Services released information on premiums and plans in 36 states where the federal government is managing the overhaul, including South Dakota and Iowa.
Uninsured Americans will pay an average premium of $328 a monthly for a mid-tier health insurance plan when the government's health exchanges open for enrollment next week. Most people signing up for insurance coverage will qualify for government tax credits to lower that price.
A major factor in determining the price for premiums is the level of competition among insurance companies, with rates significantly higher in states with fewer players. South Dakota only has three, DAKOTACARE, Avera Health Plans and Sanford Health.
The government report looks at the second-cheapest among silver plans on the market. Those are the plans healthcare experts expect to be the most popular because they include a balance of coverage and out-of-pocket costs.
According to the government report, in South Dakota the second lowest silver plan before any tax credits, for a 27-year-old with an income of $25,000 was $235 a month. Tax credits could bring that down to $145 dollars a month. The same silver plan for a family of four with an income of $50,000 was $852 a month before tax credits and $282 after.
In Iowa, the same plan starts at $683 a month, but after tax credits it is also $282 a month. A 27-year-old in Iowa with an income of $25,000 would pay $189 for the lowest silver plan before tax credits and $145 a month after tax credits.
On average, the least expensive plans in the silver group were reported in Minnesota, where it costs $192 per month
MNsure.com, Minnesota's health plan portal, launches next week.
The Health and Human Services report said the average price of premiums was 16 percent lower than its own projections.
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