May 25, 2018
OLYMPIA, Wash. – Eleven health insurers filed 74 health plans for Washington state’s individual market yesterday, and all 39 counties will be covered in 2019.
The proposed rate changes are not public until 10 days after the OIC has determined the filings are complete. Release of the proposed rate changes is targeted for June 4.
“We can all breathe a sigh of relief knowing consumers in every county who need coverage will have access to a health plan in 2019,” said Insurance Commissioner Mike Kreidler. “Obviously, how much premiums may change and any increases to out-of-pocket costs are still key concerns, but I’m grateful that we can assure people that coverage is available, regardless of where they live.”
Last year, two counties – Klickitat and Grays Harbor – initially had no option for individual health insurance. Kreidler reached out to the insurers to see if any would reconsider and Premera Blue Cross stepped in to cover Grays Harbor County and Bridgespan and Molina covered Klickitat County.
This year, Premera made assurances it was prepared to offer coverage should any county be without an individual health insurer for 2019. About 300,000 people in Washington buy their own individual health insurance coverage. Most work for employers who don’t offer health insurance, are self-employed or are early retirees.
Kreidler’s office will review all proposed health plans and their proposed rate changes over the next several months with decisions coming in the fall.