Are you covered by Obamacare? Expect to pay a lot more next year

Are you covered by Obamacare? Expect to pay a lot more next year

HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - If you've got an Obamacare plan, brace for much higher insurance rates next year.

Some 34,000 Hawaii residents get health insurance under the Affordable Care Act.

And in 2018, individual plan members covered by HMSA will see a 19.7 percent average rate hike.

Those buying Kaiser Permanente plans will see an average 24.1 percent increase.

That translates to fairly steep monthly premium rates.

Prices displayed on show that a 25-year-old in Hawaii with no dependents will pay $343.31 to $362.10 next year for a silver Kaiser plan. The plans have deductibles of $2,000 to $3,500.

Consumers must cover all medical costs until they hit their deductible, except in limited cases.

HMSA's silver plans range from $414.72 to $421.08 a month for the same 25-year-old.

State insurance officials say rates are rising because more individuals are using medical services and the future of Obamacare is uncertain.

But, they say, advanced premium tax credits can help lower monthly payments.

"It is worth the time to shop and compare plans across the various offerings," Insurance Commissioner Gordon Ito said, in a news release. "This year, a gold plan could be more affordable than a silver plan. Bronze plans can be as affordable as $5 to $10 per month, depending on your age and income."

He added that consumers shouldn't just look at premiums, but deductibles and out-of-pocket costs.

The 2018 open enrollment period for individual health plans under the Affordable Care Act started Wednesday and runs through Dec. 15.

To see plans and compare prices, click here.

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