END OF 2018 OPEN ENROLLMENT PERIOD (42 states)

Time: D H M S

Mississippi: Requested 2016 avg. rate hikes: 14.9%

For most of the states I'm analyzing, I have hard enrollment numbers for the insurance carriers requesting rate hikes over 10%; it's the remaining companies (the ones seeking hikes of less than 10%) which are generally the big unknowns.

In Mississippi's case, this is flipped around: There appear to only be 4 companies offering individual policies in the entire state, and while I'm missing the enrollment number for the biggest one (BCBSMS), I can calculate a pretty close estimate due to a unique factor: Neither of the two asking for >10% hikes are offering exchange-based policies:

Assuming subsidies remain in place, none of the individual plans available in Mississippi’s exchange have requested double digit rate increases for 2016.  The only exchange plan requesting a rate increase of ten percent or more is a small group plan from United HealthCare.  Rate increases of at least ten percent are published on Healthcare.gov’s rate review tool, and the only individual market Mississippi plans on the list are off-exchange.

This tells us that all 73,223 current exchange enrollees in MS have to be enrolled via companies requesting <10% hikes. Since Mississippi likely has roughly 127,000 ACA-compliant individual policy enrollees total this year (see bottom of table below), that leaves around 54,000 enrolled in the two higher-hike carriers. One of them (UHC) has listed their affected membership...which is only about 500 people. That leaves around 53,000 remaining to be enrolled via Blue Cross.

As a result of this, assuming an average 7% hike for the single-digit hike enrollees, that means the statewide weighted average would likely be around 14.9%: