Exchanges Mean Less Choice & Higher Prices

It is becoming clear that Health Care reform is not what the American people were promised.  A new study released on March 3, 2014, written by Senior Fellow David Hogberg, Ph.D. of the National Center for Public Policy Research, states that exchanges have reduced the choices and increased the price of insurance policies when compared to what existed in the 2013 market.

Healthcare reform supporters, including President Obama himself, claimed that the exchanges would yield more choices and lower costs for both the individual market and the small group market.  This study shows that this is simply not true.

If one were to compare the options available to a 27-year-old single person and a 57-year-old couple in metropolitan areas across the country, in general, these consumers had significantly more options to choose from through private insurers than they currently have on the exchanges.

Furthermore, the exchanges do not fare well on price.  The aforementioned 27-year-olds and 57-year-olds often had many more options that cost less than the lowest price policy on the exchanges.  In some cases, they had options that cost less even after they received a subsidy for insurance on the exchange.

What does all of this mean for The Merriam Agency and our clients?  Now, more than ever, it is essential to take advantage of the expertise we provide.  This includes, but is not limited to, analyzing your particular situation and making sure we are contacting all of the appropriate markets to ensure we are identifying the most competitive products and pricing available to you. Please contact us if you are interested in learning more about our services.

The National Center for Public Policy Research, founded in 1982 is a non-partisan, free market, independent think tank.

The Merriam Agency is pleased to announce the addition of Francis X. Foley to our staff as Health and Benefits Department Manager. With more than 15 years of experience in the insurance industry, Fran specializes in the design and implementation of individual, group and employee benefit plans. This includes health & welfare, life, disability, long term care and voluntary worksite benefits, as well as helping clients navigate the intricacies of the national Affordable Care Act (aka “Obamacare”). 

Fran will be happy to meet with you to discuss your benefits needs. You may reach him by calling The Merriam Agency toll-free at (877) MERRIAM (637-7426), Ext. 205.

Pros & Cons

Brian’s Perspective

Brian Merriam

As we continue the national debate over universal healthcare, it seems that the federal government will not be making any changes soon to lower the cost to the average consumer; in fact, costs have risen even faster than before ACA became “affordable”. This is a simple mathematical function: if more people are forced to enter the healthcare system yet are given discounts for doing so, those that are the most likely to need health insurance will enter first…the rest will wait until the penalties for remaining uninsured exceed the cost of insuring. This will likely take far too long to make any difference to improve the pool of insureds and their skyrocketing premium increases.

We have the ideas and tools to help mitigate increased healthcare costs. Call us for a discussion before the full implementation of ACA.

Brian H. Merriam
(877) MERRIAM, extension 201

Shannon McMeel

Shannon McMeel

Group Benefits Department Manager
Schenectady, NY

(877) MERRIAM x 203
(877) 637-7426 x 203