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Small Business Employee Benefits and HR Blog

The Cost of Individual Health Insurance on the Private Market - Open Enrollment 2014

The cost of individual and family health insurance on the public exchanges has received a lot of attention. But what about the cost of insurance on the private market?

A recent price index report by eHealth provides a snapshot of private, non-subsidized individual health insurance prices outside of the government Exchanges. The report provides an analysis of plans for the first quarter of 2014, as well as for the ACA’s full 2014 Open Enrollment Period (OEP), which ran October 1, 2013 through March 31, 2014.

Monthly Premiums Averaged $271 for Individual Coverage, $667 for Family

Consumers shopping through eHealth's non-governmental private Exchange during the recent Open Enrollment Period chose plans with monthly premiums averaging $271 for individual coverage and $667 for family coverage. Here's a look at the premium ranges as a percentage of all plans.

Monthly_Premiums_Individual_Plans_via_eHealth

Monthly_Premiums_Family_Plans_via_eHealth

 

Cost and Plan Trends for Open Enrollment 2014

In addition to monthly premiums, the report highlighted the following trends for the Open Enrollment Period (OEP), October 2013 - March 2014:

  • The average annual deductible for individual plans was $4,164 and the average annual deductible for family plans was $7,771.

  • Bronze was the most common plan metal level selected by both individual and family health insurance shoppers. Average monthly premiums for individual plans by metal level were:

    • Catastrophic: $134
    • Bronze: $259
    • Silver: $328
    • Gold: $353
    • Platinum: $411
Premiums_by_Metallic_Plan
  • Alaska was the state with the highest average monthly premium for individual plans ($452); New Jersey had the highest average premium for family plans ($987). Minnesota was the state with the lowest average monthly premium for individual plans ($191); Oklahoma had the lowest average monthly premium for family plans ($476).

state_premiums_via_eHealth
  • Plans eligible for use with a Health Savings Account (HSA) accounted for 32% of all plans selected. The average monthly premium for HSA-eligible plans was $271 for individual coverage and $603 for family coverage.

  • Young adults between the ages of 18 and 34 accounted for 42% of all persons submitting health insurance applications through eHealth during open enrollment.

  • Slightly more than half (52%) of eHealth shoppers were women; 48% were men; the average age was 38.

  • PPO plans were the most popular among eHealth shoppers (45%), followed by HMO plans (39%).

Methodology

Data presented in eHealth's report is based solely on rates quoted for health insurance applications submitted by consumers through the company's website, eHealthInsurance.com, in the specified time period. It does not offer a comprehensive view of costs for all plans available through eHealth, through the market as a whole, or through government exchanges. 

Source: eHealth and eHealth Price Index

What stands out to you about the cost of individual health insurance on the private market?

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