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Despite declining the Affordable Care Act (ACA) and the Medicaid expansion, Missouri still benefitted from Obamacare, seeing a considerable increase in its insured population. And while many of its counties will only have one option as their carrier, four insurers remain on the state exchange this year. There are many other changes in the health insurance sector in MO you should know of. In this guide, you’ll learn of the impact of the lower uninsured rating and health performance on premiums. You’ll also read about the rate hikes and some projections for 2017 premium averages.

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How the state stands in health performance

MO falls short in terms of health performance, ranking 36th of 51 in the 2015 Commonwealth Fund’s State Health System Performance. Its highest score of quintile 2 was for the indicator, “Prevention & Treatment.” However, it performed below average for the remaining categories. Under the Healthy Lives scorecard, where it ranked 40th, the study found the following:

  • Mortality amenable to healthcare: 95 out of 100,000 people

  • Breast cancer fatalities: 22 out of 100,000 women

  • Colorectal cancer fatalities: 15.7 out of 100,000 individuals

  • Percentage of adult smokers: 20%

  • Adult obesity: 31%

  • Obesity in children aged 10-17: 28%

Here are a few statistical comparisons in terms of “Access” to insurance as well:

  • 16% of adults (19 to 64 years old) don’t have insurance, compared with the national average of 15%

  • 7% 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

  • 17% of adults had expensive out-of-pocket medical bills

Your premiums also depend on the metal tier you choose

Of course, the specific type of metal tier you choose also dictates how much you’ll pay for toward your coverage. Like in all other states, Missouri offers four different plans. Aside from variations in premiums, another key difference among them is the percentage of medical and hospital costs the insurer will reimburseBelow is a breakdown of each tier:

Bronze – 60%

Silver – 70%

Gold – 80%

Platinum – 90%

Bronze
Silver
Gold
Platinum

For you to have some idea on your new premium averages, here are some projections from the United States Department of Health & Human Services:

  • Average lowest-cost, monthly premium within metal level: $438

  • Average net premium for lowest cost plan within metal tier: $105

  • Second-lowest silver before advance premium tax credit (for a 27-year old with a $25,000 household income): $305

  • 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): $1,103

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

Decrease in the state’s uninsured rating: How you’re affected

Insurance companies factor as many potentials for risk as possible when calculating rates. And one of the major considerations is the percentage of the population without insurance within a specific place. In other words, you would have better rates when you live somewhere with low uninsured rating.

The U.S. Department of Health & Human Services reported that, in 2015, the Show-Me State, with an estimated population of 6,083,672 (2015, latest data1), had an uninsured rating of 9.8%. Back in 2010, this was up at 13.2%. By the completion of the five-year study, 203,000 individuals obtained coverage, representing a 3.4% decrease in the group that went without insurance.

Reduce your risk of medical bankruptcy

You already know of the many different ways you can benefit from health insurance, seeing as it helps you pay for medical and hospital expenditures. Also keep in mind that it serves as a protection from medical bankruptcy, which remains one of the biggest concerns and causes of bankruptcy in the country.

References:

https://www.healthinsurance.org/missouri/

http://datacenter.commonwealthfund.org/scorecard/state/27/missouri/

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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