New Mexico: 2015 QHP premiums to see 1-2% DROP on average (weighting unknown) (UPDATED)

Hat Tip To: 
Suzanne P.

This Just In...3 out of the 5 insurers operating on the New Mexico ACA exchange are dropping their 2015 premium rates. A fourth is increasing theirs, and the fifth one is new. The overall average is a 1-2% drop, although I can't tell whether that's a weighted or unweighted average (neither the enrollee breakdown nor the actual % change for the individual companies is included in the article):

Individual health insurance premiums in New Mexico will drop by an average of 1 to 2 percent in 2015 for those who buy on the state’s health insurance exchange, New Mexico Superintendent of Insurance John Franchini said Wednesday.

Franchini’s office released the new individual rates from the five insurers that will be selling on the exchange. Three of those insurers – New Mexico Health Connections, Blue Cross and Blue Shield of New Mexico and Molina Healthcare of New Mexico – saw some decreases in their overall rates from this year, said Aaron Ezekiel, head of Affordable Care Implementation for the Office of the Superintendent of Insurance.

Presbyterian Health Plan had some increases, Ezekiel said. CHRISTUS Health Plan is new to the exchange.

UPDATE: Well, this still doesn't answer the question of what each company's increase/decrease percent is, but it does answer the other side of the "weighting" question. Thanks to Esther F. for reminding me of this article from back in May:

Blue Cross and Blue Shield of New Mexico said it has enrolled 15,000 New Mexicans in health insurance plans through the state and federal health exchanges, for a nearly 47 percent market share of the exchange business. ... In addition, the insurer gained 7,000 members through off-exchange policies...

...In early April, Presbyterian Health Plan said it had enrolled 6,459 New Mexicans through the exchanges, and 3,393 in off-exchange plans.

...New Mexico Health Connections, the state’s startup, nonprofit health plan, said it had enrolled close to 10,000 people on and off the exchange.

I'm assuming that the ratio between insurers hasn't changed much during the off-season, which means that BCBSNM = around 47% of the market. Presbyterian's 6,459 is out of the official 4/19 total of 32,062, so that's 20.1%.

There's no breakout of NM Health Connection's on/off-exchange numbers, but the other 2 companies are both roughly 2:1. Assuming this holds true for all 4 of the companies which operated on the exchange the first year, that would mean roughly 6,600 for NMHC, or around 20.5%. That would leave around 4,000 for Molina, or around 12.5%.

UPDATE: OK, this still doesn't let me run a weighted average, but it fills in a few more pieces of the NM puzzle:

Presbyterian Health Plan President Lisa Lujan said Wednesday that the insurer’s individual rates for 2015 for the state’s health insurance exchange are generally flat with no real increases.

“Across all of our plans, we actually held our rates flat. There were some actuarial requirements and some modifications had to be made,” Lujan told Albuquerque Business First.


...Some of the rates for plans being sold by New Mexico Health Connections fell by 5 percent, NMHC CEO Dr. Martin Hickey said.

(sigh) OK, so:

  • BCBSNM: 47.0% market share, 2015 rates "down slightly"
  • Molina: 12.5% market share, 2015 rates "down slightly"
  • NMHC: 20.5% market share, 2015 rates "down around 5%"
  • Presbyterian: 20.1% market share, 2015 rates "flat"
  • Overall, 1-2%

So, it doesn't sound like a weighted average would change much anyway, since all 4 are either flat or down between 0-5% and the overall is down 1-2% (shrug).