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Although California has lower rate increases than all of other states, its better to do the research before choosing a coverage.

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You and your health insurance

With health coverage, you can expect outside financial assistance to help pay for medical services and even some types of prescription drugs. In exchange, you make payments, called premiums, towards your insurance.

How high or low your premiums are depend on a myriad of variables. However, one of the biggest determiners is your exact location. For instance, a study from the National Conference of State Legislatures assessed the monthly 2015 premiums of a 40-year-old nonsmoker per state. It showed that on average, these individuals in CA, with an estimated population of 39,144,818 (2015, latest data1) paid a monthly average of $307.40.

Where you live plays a big role in determining your premiums, as insurance companies also take into consideration your place of residence’s population and uninsured rating. The U.S. Department of Health & Human Services stated that from 2010 to 2015, the Golden State had a 9.90% increase in the number of insured people.

Does California have good health rankings?

The 2015 Commonwealth Fund’s Scorecard on State Health System Performance awarded CA 23rd place. Some of the study’s most notable findings include the following:

  • Mortality amenable to healthcare: 72 out of 100,000 people

  • Breast cancer fatalities: 20.1 out of 100,000 women

  • Percentage of adult smokers: 12%

  • Adult obesity: 25%

  • Obesity in children aged 10-17: 30%

These are some of the other statistics affecting premiums that the study covered:

  • 17% of adults (19 to 64 years old) don’t have insurance, compared with the national average of 15%

  • 6% of children (infants to 18 years old) are uninsured, as opposed to the countrywide average of 6%

  • 14% of the adult population chose not to obtain insurance due to the high costs associated with it

  • 13% of adults had expensive out-of-pocket medical bills

  • A 7% increase, on average, in benchmark premiums

  • Second-lowest silver before advance premium tax credit (for a 27-year old with a $25,000 household income): $272

  • Second-lowest silver before advance premium tax credit (for a family of four with a $60,000 household income): $985

  • Second-lowest silver monthly premium for a 27-year old with a $25,000 household income) living in Los Angeles County Region 1, Region 2, San Diego, and San Francisco, respectively: $212/$222/$252/$364

Decrease in the nation’s poverty rating: How it impacts premiums

In 2014, 11.6% of the country’s population was living in poverty. This accounted for a total of 9.5 million families. The following year, it went down by 1.2%. Because of this, more people gained insurance, and all throughout the country, the uninsured rating in each state dropped as well. Areas that had seen significant improvements in this aspect enjoyed lower increase rates in health insurance.

From 2010 to 2015, 3,826,000 people gained coverage in CA, representing a 9.9% increase in the state’s insured rating. This and the improvements in its health performance ratings are some of the main reasons behind the lower increase in premiums.

Compare for bigger savings

The golden rule you shouldn’t fail to follow when it comes to shopping for insurance is to always shop around and compare as many offers as possible. This is the best way to secure a plan that will provide you with sufficient coverage and protect you from the exorbitant cost of medical services. To learn more, click here.

References:

http://www.ncsl.org/research/health/health-insurance-premiums.aspx

https://aspe.hhs.gov/compilation-state-data-affordable-care-act

http://datacenter.commonwealthfund.org/scorecard/state/2/alabama/

1Latest data: The U.S. census is conducted every 10 years as per requirement of the United States Constitution. The 23rd edition and the latest data is the 2010 United States Census. Source: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/2010_United_States_Census
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