I can't overstate how much I wish every state was as good as Pennsylvania is at not only making their annual rate filings publicly available on the state insurance dept. website, but doing so in such a clear, simple format, while also including a consistent summary page for every carrier!
As a result of this attention to transparency and detail, I was able to put together my Pennsylvania analysis pretty quickly even though they hae a huge number of carriers on both their individual and small group markets.
Aside from Cigna joining the PA indy market, not too many surprises in the Keystone State this year...approved average indy market premiums are staying nearly flat overall (+0.2%), while small group plans will cost around 4.8% more than last year on average.
Wolf Administration Commemorates Pennie’s Two-Year Anniversary; Encourages Pennsylvanians to Enroll in Health Coverage
Deadline to Receive 2021 Savings on Health Coverage is August 15
Harrisburg, PA – The Wolf Administration today commemorated the two-year anniversary of Pennie, Pennsylvania’s state-based health exchange. To date, more than 335,000 consumers have enrolled for coverage through Pennie and, because of the American Rescue Plan, average premiums after subsidies have dropped by half since the beginning of the year, down to $86 a month.
Wolf Administration and Pennie Leadership Visit YMCA Health Equity Tour to Help Provide Affordable Health Coverage Resources, Health Services, and COVID-19 Vaccines to Pennsylvanians
York, PA – The Wolf Administration and Pennie leadership today provided information on health resources and affordable health coverage, as well as COVID-19 vaccinations to visitors during a YMCA Health Equity Tour at the York City Branch of the YMCA.
“The COVID-19 pandemic has intensified the health inequities across the commonwealth,” Pennsylvania Department of Health Acting Secretary Alison Beam said. “We are here at the York stop on the YMCA and Pennie Health Equity Tour to discuss a variety of educational health services and to encourage Pennsylvanians to receive a free COVID-19 vaccine today. We want to make sure all underserved communities are vaccinated and have an opportunity to enroll in affordable health coverage.”
On top of yesterday's confirmation by the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid that over 1.24 million Americans have enrolled in ACA coverage via HealthCare.Gov so far during the ongoing Special Enrollment Period, I've also just been informed that Pennsylvania (one of the 15 states operating their own ACA exchange) has enrolled nearly 39,000 people during their SEP since 2/15 as well:
Pennsylvania didn't launch ACA expansion until 2015. Once it ramped up, total enrollment (both ACA & non-ACA) hovered around the 2.8 - 2.9 million range until COVID hit. Since then, non-ACA Medicaid has gone up by 9.8%; the expansion population has grown by 29.8%; and overall enrollment is up 15.2%.
Now that I've developed a standardized format/layout & methodology for tracking both state- and county-level COVID vaccination levels by partisan lean (which can also be easily applied to other variables like education level, median income, population density, ethnicity, etc), I've started moving beyond my home state of Michigan.
Savings to the Rescue – Pennie is Now Open with Increased Savings
Pennie Customers Can Now See Savings When Shopping for Health Coverage
Uninsured Pennsylvanians will be able to receive significant savings in health coverage as a result of the American Rescue Plan
Harrisburg, PA – April 16 – As a result of the recent American Rescue Plan, also known as the COVID-19 relief package, provisions specific to the Affordable Care Act have impacted the way health insurance is available in Pennsylvania. These provisions include significant impacts, including an increase in savings, for Pennsylvanians seeking individual market coverage and those already enrolled through Pennie, as well as those who may lose their employment and rely on COBRA to maintain their employer coverage. Pennie is excited to announce that these savings are now available at pennie.com for those looking to enroll in quality, affordable coverage.
A few weeks ago, Pennie (Pennsylvania's ACA exchange), like several other state-based exchanges, put out a simple statement celebrating the passage of the American Rescue Plan (ARP) and the dramatic improvement in ACA affordability that it brings for the next two years. Like most of the other exchanges, Pennie's initial press release was pretty bare-bones, as the bill had just been signed into law and there were a ton of logistical details to be worked out.
This is from a couple of weeks ago; I'm reposting it standalone for clarity. via Pennie: (via a text graphic for some reason):
Joint Statement from The Pennsylvania Insurance Dept. & Pennie regarding the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021:
"The American Rescue Plan Act of 2021 will not only provide financial assistance through the forthcoming stimulus checks, but will also provide an estimated $270 million in additional subsidies to current Pennie customers in 2021 alone. Through this law, marketplace premiums will be capped at 8.5% of a household's income, meaning current Pennie customers will see lower monthly premiums and those without coverae or who were previously ineligible will now have access to financial help if they shop at Pennie.com.
In some cases, lower-income enrollees will have their monthly premiums eliminated entirely. Additionally, anyone who was eligible for unemployment income in 2021 will be eligible for coverage thorugh Pennie with a $0 premium for the remainder of the year.
I just received the following COVID Enrollment Period update from Pennie, Pennsylvania's new state-based ACA exchange. This appears to be part of an official report which they're still working on.
The "Existing" numbers refer to current Pennie enrollees who are taking advantage of the COVID SEP to switch to a different plan mid-year; this is something which usually isn't allowed, even during traditional Special Enrollment Periods (SEPs), but Pennie, along with HealthCare.Gov and many of the other state-based exchanges, are allowing them to do so during this period.
There's an obvious reason for this, too: The impending passage of the American Rescue Plan will mean dramatically improved/expanded subsidies for ACA enrollees, including many who haven't been eligible for them until now. This means millions of Americans who enrolled in Bronze plans because they weren't eligible for subsidies will be able to upgrade to Silver or Gold; it also means many people will become eligible for $0-premium plans who currently aren't, and so on.