ObamaCare Premiums Jumped 23% This Year -- After Subsidies


by John Merline

Source: Investor’s Business Daily

President Obama has talked a lot in recent months about how health care inflation has moderated in recent years, and he always manages to credit ObamaCare for the result.

But there is rampant inflation in one part of the health care system, and ironically enough it involves ObamaCare premiums.

According to official government data, the average premium paid by those signing up through the federal Healthcare.gov site this year was $101 a month, after factoring in the subsidies.

Last year, however, the average premium, net of subsidies, was $82.

That's a 23% increase.

The reason, explains John Graham at the National Center for Policy Analysis, is that -- thanks to the crazy-quilt way ObamaCare calculates the tax credit -- the average subsidy went down slightly this year while premiums increased by 5%.

Next year is likely to bring more premium pain, if the Congressional Budget Office is right. It says insurance costs will climb 8.5% in 2016, in part because various ObamaCare insurance bailout programs start coming to an end.

How those higher premiums will affect subsidy payments, and therefore what enrollees actually pay, is anybody's guess.

Graham found other interesting tidbits in the government's official ObamaCare enrollment reports.

He notes, for example, that only 38% of enrollees paid less than $50 a month in premiums, even though 77% could have enrolled in such plans. And while 89% could have signed up with a plan costing less than $100 a month, just 63% did so.

"ObamaCare subscribers," he concludes, "have enough discretionary income to pay for health insurance and need not be so dependent on taxpayers."