Blue Cross and Blue Shield (BCBS) of North Carolina has just announced that in 2017 it will increase premiums for individual plans under Obamacare by an average 24.3 percent.
This is higher than the 18.8% BCBS asked for in May. BCBS is blaming this latest increase on other insurance providers pulling out of the North Carolina market starting in 2017.
In 2016, BCBS received an average 32.5% rate increase. This was the highest rate increase in the nation. In 2015, BCBS hiked their rates between 19.2% to 25.7%.
Combining the last three years of hikes and using the highest total percentage from 2015, North Carolina has seen an 82.5% increase.
One of the largest groups covered under BCBS are the North Carolina State Employees. What kind of hikes are the state employees seeing? Using the rate calculator for 2016, an employee/retiree enrolling under the Premium Traditional 70/30 Plan is as follows:
Employee/Retiree + children = $210.92
Employee/Retiree + Spouse = $543.46
Employee/Retiree + Family = $578.86
Here is 2017, with the increase noted in parentheses:
Employee/Retiree + children = $218.14 (+ $7.22)
Employee/Retiree + Spouse = $562.10 (+ 18.64)
Employee/Retiree + Family = $598.70 (+ $19.84)