03 Aug 2017

Average individual health insurance premiums by state

Average individual health insurance premiums by state

The average cost of health insurance varies by state, just as it varies between insurance companies and the kind of policy coverage you want. There are many changes that are currently being made in the health insurance structure of the United States, many of which could affect how many people are able to find affordable health care coverage.

The cost of health care has changed over the years as the industry has evolved. The population of the United States is aging, which means the health insurance industry must create insurance policies that meet the needs and the budget of America’s elderly residents. Likewise, younger residents of the country are also looking for affordable health policies that they can use to protect themselves and their growing families.

State health insurance premiums

The cost of this care is perhaps the most prohibitive factor for people deciding if they can have insurance or not. Under the Affordable Care Act, or Obamacare, individuals must have health insurance or pay a penalty for not having the protection during the year. Obamacare has been widely criticized, although there has not been a suitable alternative offered to the American public so far.

There are a few factors that influence how much a health insurance plan costs. One of these factors is your location; local insurance companies compete on a local market where they can cater their policies to the people in their area. National insurance companies can influence local insurance policy prices and sales, but they can also work to destabilize the overall insurance industry by decreasing their policy offerings that are available as part of the state and federal health insurance marketplaces.

Health insurance policy premiums can also be affected by your age, pre-existing conditions you may have, whether or not you have insurance through your employer, or if you qualify for federal programs like Medicare or Medicaid. Each state has different health insurance subsidies that they offer, and some states are changing how their insurance options are structured in order to give their residents more affordable options that aren’t necessarily tied to the federal insurance structure.

State premium averages

Currently, insurance premiums and costs are based primarily on age and location because of how the insurance marketplace has been put together under the Affordable Care Act. Typically, older residents of the United States will pay more for their coverage. This is because there are more health issues that can crop up as people get older. On average, 30-year olds will pay 1.2 times more than 21-year olds will for their insurance policies; 40-year olds will pay 1.3 times more; 50-year olds will pay 1.8 times more than 21-year olds, and people aged 64-years and older will pay 3 times as much for insurance as a 21-year old would.

The second biggest factor regarding how much you may end up paying for your coverage is based on your location. Here is a breakdown of how much a 21-year old pays on average for their health insurance policy in the United States per month:

Alaska: $426
Alabama: $217
Arkansas: $236
Arizona: $247
Delaware: $255
Florida: $285
Georgia: $253
Iowa: $251
Illinois: $244
Indiana: $276
Kansas: $196
Louisiana: $284
Maine: $271
Michigan: $251
Missouri: $254
Mississippi: $234
Montana: $210
North Carolina: $270
North Dakota: $242
Nebraska: $243
New Hampshire: $246
New Jersey: $307
New Mexico: $211
Nevada: $279
Ohio: $258
Oklahoma: $209
Oregon: $206
Pennsylvania: $231
South Carolina: $249
South Dakota: $235
Tennessee: $225
Texas: $239
Utah: $180
Virginia: $222
Wisconsin: $280
West Virginia: $242
Wyoming: $366

The Healthcare Marketplace

There are different tiers of health insurance coverage that can be purchased through both state and federal health insurance marketplaces. These tiers range from catastrophic insurance, the cheapest level, and then move up from bronze to silver, gold to platinum. The lesser tiers tend to have higher deductibles, cover less, and have higher co-pays and coinsurance. Rates depend on what tier you purchase, what you want your deductibles and other costs to be, and how much overall coverage you need in a plan.

Prices for catastrophic health insurance for a 21-year old is about $197 per month, while the bronze to platinum tiers range from $200 to over $300. Of course, these rates can increase based on where you live, how old you are, if you have other insurance options, and whether or not you have pre-existing health issues. The average prices of health care insurance will continue to change as states take the reins on their own programs and as the federal government continues with their great insurance debate.

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