health insurance

Medicare Open Enrollment Ends Next Week

Nov 28, 2016

  Medicare’s annual open enrollment ends December 7th.   State insurance program director Sandy Leith says it’s a good time for residents to review their coverage.  


"If you do nothing, and your plan is still going to be there in 2017, then you'll wake up January 1 in the same plan and that's fine. We just want to make sure everybody does a check-up annually to make sure that their Medicare health plans and drug plans work best for them."


"041/365 - April 29, 2009" By Flickr User Morgan / (CC X 2.0)

Illinois consumers who buy health insurance on the marketplace created by President Barack Obama's overhaul will find less choice than ever when they pick a policy for next year.

The lack of competition is felt nationally. A new analysis by The Associated Press and Avalere Health finds about one-third of U.S. counties will have only one health marketplace insurer next year.

In Illinois, last time around, there were three or more marketplace insurers offering plans for 2016 in all counties.

Illinoisans who buy insurance on the health care law's marketplace face steep price increases for next year.

That's been predicted for some time. Now it's official. The Illinois Department of Insurance published an analysis of 2017 health plans Friday based on final price increases approved by state and federal regulators.

Statewide, the average rate increase for the lowest cost "silver" plan is 45 percent. (Silver is a label of a middle-tier plan that's been a popular choice.)

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.


The rate of Illinois residents with health insurance continues to grow.

In 2013, nearly 18 percent of Illinois adults didn’t have insurance.

The next year, the Affordable Care Act took effect. The rate of uninsured dropped to 15 percent that year.

Last year, it continued to fall.

A new report from the Centers for Disease Control puts the figure at more than 10 percent. That insurance comes from Obamacare for many Illinoisans.