Hawaii always had a laudable health care system. Most of its residents strive hard to live healthily, and they know just how valuable health insurance is. This is one of the primary reasons the state boasts of an impressively low uninsured rating.

There are quite a number of changes you should know of though, so you can set realistic expectations. One of these is an increase in premiums. Rate increases, although much lower than the national average of 25%, have paved the way for hikes in premiums.

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The state’s consistently low uninsured rating

A primary factor that determines premiums is the percentage of the population in a given area without insurance. Since this represents only a small portion of the residents of HI, health insurance costs aren’t as high as in many other states.

According to a recent report from the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, the Aloha State, with an estimated population of 1,431,603 (2015, latest data1) only has a 4.0% uninsured rating in 2015. This represents a drop of 3.9% from 2010 to 2015. During this year, 54,000 more people gained access to health insurance.

The state’s impressive health performance grades

In the 2015 State Health System Performance carried out by The Commonwealth Fund, Hawaii secured 3rd place. It ranked first in the two dimensions and indicators “Avoidable Hospital Use & Costs,” as well as “Equity.” It also secured 6th place in the “Healthy Lives” category.

Here are some of the key takeaways from the study:

  • Mortality amenable to healthcare: 75 out of 100,000 people

  • Breast cancer fatalities: 15.5 out of 100,000 women

  • Colorectal cancer fatalities: 14.2 out of 100,000 individuals

  • Percentage of adult smokers: 13%

  • Adult obesity: 24%

  • Obesity in children aged 10-17: 27%

The organization also compared the state average with that of the country for the following aspects under the “Access” category:

  • 7% of adults (19 to 64 years old) don’t have insurance, compared with the national average of 15%

  • 3% of children (infants to 18 years old) are uninsured, as opposed to the countrywide average of 6%

  • 9% of the adult population chose not to obtain insurance due to the high costs associated with it

  • 14% of adults had expensive out-of-pocket medical bills

The percentage of the bill your insurer will cover

There are four different metal plans to choose from, and each one has a specific portion that an insurance provider covers. The bigger their share is, the lower the out-of-pocket expenses the insured pays for.

Bronze – 60%

Silver – 70%

Gold – 80%

Platinum – 90%

Bronze
Silver
Gold
Platinum

The country’s residents face hikes in rates every year. As a citizen of Hawaii, you can expect this increase to average at 22%.

As for the 2017 projected premium averages, the United States Department of Health & Human Services has charted the following possibilities:

  • Average lowest-cost, monthly premium within metal level: $444

  • Average net premium for lowest cost plan within metal tier: $138

  • Second-lowest silver before advance premium tax credit (for a 27-year old with a $25,000 household income): $288

  • Second-lowest silver after advance premium tax credit (for a 27-year old with a $25,000 household income): $117

  • Second-lowest silver before advance premium tax credit (for a family of four with a $60,000 household income): $1,042

  • Second-lowest silver before advance premium tax credit (for a family of four with a $60,000 household income): $348

Maintain a healthy lifestyle to avoid devastating medical bills

The jaw-dropping improvements in the medical field continues to save lives, but it comes at a high cost. The most practical way to protect yourself from this is through obtaining sufficient coverage, and of course, keeping your health in check.

References:

https://www.healthinsurance.org/hawaii/

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

http://datacenter.commonwealthfund.org/scorecard/state/13/hawaii/

https://aspe.hhs.gov/sites/default/files/pdf/212721/2017MarketplaceLandscapeBrief.pdf

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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