Affordable Health Care Act

Flickr user / Images Money "Healthcare Costs" (CC BY 2.0)

Health care premiums are rising, but the effect is concentrated on plans sold on and other exchanges.

In Illinois, premiums for insurance plans bought on the exchange are expected to go up this year.  That's because several carriers left the marketplace, citing losses.  Their absence means less competition. Blue Cross Blue Shield, one of the state's largest insurance providers, could raise their rates by more than 50 percent.

Health insurance premiums could increase by almost half for Illinois residents who buy plans through Affordable Care Act markets, according to proposals submitted by insurers.

Blue Cross Blue Shield is the largest company on the exchange, and is proposing increases ranging from 23 to 45 percent for individual plans.

The company says these increases are in line with those in markets across the country.   Analysts note insurers are facing higher medical costs from ACA customers, and some companies priced their initial coverage too low in an attempt to grab new business.

 Following today's ruling  from the U.S. Supreme Court, Illinois residents who bought health insurance under the affordable care act will get to keep tax credits that cut the cost of their plans. 

Free Health Insurance Event For Young Adults

Jan 28, 2015
Get Covered America

Young adults can learn more about their health insurance options at a free health insurance presentation Thursday at the Northern Illinois University facility in Rockford.

Certified helpers will answer questions and help enroll participants for health insurance before the Feb. 15 deadline.

This National Youth Enrollment Day event is for young adults between the ages of 18 and 26. Juliana Barker, a grant coordinator at the Winnebago County Health Department, says young adults may not be properly educated about insurance.

Confused about Obamacare? You're not alone. Nearly all Americans will be required to have health insurance starting January 1, 2014, or else they will be liable for a tax penalty. But many people aren't sure if they qualify and they have no clear idea of how much insurance might cost.

WNIJ can help. By entering data like zip code, income, age, family size and other factors into the Obamacare Calculator below, users can get estimates of the tax subsidies and insurance premiums available to them if they purchase insurance through the marketplaces, or exchanges.