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Over the past years, health insurance in Mississippi underwent drastic changes. For instance, those who participated in the 2017 open enrolment noticed a rate hike averaging at more than 30%, much higher than the national average of 25%. Because of the approved increase, its residents now pays more towards their coverage. As someone living in the Magnolia State, you should equip yourself with the knowledge of all the relevant changes in its health insurance sector. This way, in the event that you missed the enrolment, you’ll still have the chance to obtain coverage that won’t break the bank.

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How the state fares in health rankings

Another basis that insurance companies use in calculating rates and premiums is a particular location’s health performance. This is one of the primary reasons why Mississippi’s rate increase went beyond the national average this year. In the 2015 Commonwealth Fund State Health System Performance, it had the poorest performance of all 50 states and the District of Columbia. It ranked 51st, receiving quintile 4 scorecards for all the indicators used in the study, including “Access,” “Prevention & Treatment,” “Avoidable Hospital Use & Costs,” “Healthy Lives,” and “Equity.” Take a look at these findings taken from the state’s Healthy Live’s scorecard:

  • Mortality amenable to healthcare: 137 out of 100,000 people

  • Breast cancer fatalities: 23.3 out of 100,000 women

  • Colorectal cancer fatalities: 18.8 out of 100,000 individuals

  • Percentage of adult smokers: 22%

  • Adult obesity: 37%

  • Obesity in children aged 10-17: 40%

In terms of access to health coverage, the organization made the following comparisons:

  • 22% 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%

  • 19% of the adult population chose not to obtain insurance due to the high costs associated with it

  • 2% of adults had expensive out-of-pocket medical bills

The metal tiers to choose from

The high costs of medical and hospital services should already make you realize just how helpful having more-than-just-the-basic coverage is. Although you would have to pay more, the extra cost easily outweighs the possibility of you having to pay thousands of thousands more in out-of-pocket expenses. Here’s a quick look on the metal tiers available in your state as well as the corresponding portion you can expect your insurer to cover:

Bronze – 60%

Silver – 70%

Gold – 80%

Platinum – 90%

Bronze
Silver
Gold
Platinum

The United States Department of Health & Human Services charted out the following 2017 premium average projections for MS residents:

  • Average lowest-cost, monthly premium within metal level: $416

  • Average net premium for lowest cost plan within metal tier: $76

  • Second-lowest silver before advance premium tax credit (for a 27-year old with a $25,000 household income): $273

  • Second-lowest silver after advance premium tax credit (for a 27-year old with a $25,000 household income): $142

  • Second-lowest silver before advance premium tax credit (for a family of four with a $60,000 household income): $989

  • Second-lowest silver before advance premium tax credit (for a family of four with a $60,000 household income): $405

Lower uninsured rating: Helped control extremely high rate increases

It’s vital you have an idea on how many people in your location have insurance, as this is one of the most critical factors insurers carefully consider when determining premiums. In general, the lower the population without insurance is, the better the premiums. Yes, a rate increase still applies, but it doesn’t automatically mean you would already have to pay double or even more.

About 161,000 of the state’s estimated population of 2,992,333 (2015, latest data1) acquired insurance in 2015, according to a recent U.S. Department of Health & Human Services study. This represents a 5.5% drop from its uninsured rating of 18.2% back in 2010.

Final advice

You already know just how helpful health insurance is, but this doesn’t automatically mean you no longer have a way to cut back on your expenditures. Take the time to compare offers from different providers, and make sure the plan you obtain offers adequate coverage.

References:

https://www.healthinsurance.org/mississippi/

http://datacenter.commonwealthfund.org/scorecard/state/26/mississippi/

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

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

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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