Harrisburg, PA – Insurance Commissioner Jessica Altman today announced Pennsylvania's 2022 Individual and Small Group Affordable Care Act (ACA) health insurance rates, highlighting increased marketplace competition for several counties and a low, nearly flat, statewide average rate change in the individual market. Pennsylvanians can expect more options and greater competition while shopping for health insurance plans for 2022.
Based on the products now approved by the Department, all insurers currently offering individual market coverage in Pennsylvania's 67 counties will continue to provide plans in 2022 with a statewide average increase of 0.2 percent. The commonwealth will see a 4.5 percent average increase in the small group market. The rates present more options for consumers looking for comprehensive health insurance plans that provide robust benefits.
Pennsylvania's Reinsurance Program created under the Federal Section 1332 State Relief and Empowerment Waiver and enabled by Act 42 of 2019 continues to provide measurable savings. This year the program is resulting in 2022 individual market premiums that are 5.5% lower than they would be without the program. Further, the American Rescue Plan (ARP) lowered, and in some cases eliminated, health insurance premiums for thousands of lower and middle-income families enrolled in health coverage through Pennie™, Pennsylvania's health insurance marketplace. These enhanced savings will continue to be available in 2022 and may be available beyond 2022 depending on Congressional action, a step strongly supported by the Wolf administration.
"Pennsylvania continues to have a robust and competitive health insurance marketplace, despite the lasting presence of COVID-19," said Altman. "The bi-partisan, landmark legislation, Act 42 of 2019, is delivering on its promise of a more affordable, stable and accessible health insurance marketplace for Pennsylvania. With an increase in options for many counties and stable premiums, there are now more pathways to ensuring everyone has an opportunity to get covered."
Within Pennsylvania's 67 counties, no county will lose an on-exchange insurer and 25 counties will gain a new insurer offering coverage through Pennie. Specifically, 22 counties will gain one insurer and three counties will gain two insurers.
Pennsylvania will no longer have any counties with only one insurer offering coverage in 2022. Every county in Pennsylvania will have at least two insurers offering coverage and for the first time, some counties will have six insurers offering coverage.
With the addition of Cigna Health and Life Insurance Company, Pennsylvania will now have eight insurers offering health coverage plans, the most the commonwealth has seen since the passage of the ACA.
"The Wolf administration has remained dedicated to the health, well-being and financial security for all Pennsylvanians during the COVID-19 pandemic and has taken various paths to educate consumers about the importance of health insurance during COVID-19 and beyond," said Altman. "With more than 330,000 Pennsylvanians enrolled through Pennie and 90 percent of those consumers receiving financial assistance, it is of the utmost importance that we continue to educate individuals on how to protect themselves and their families."
Last year, Pennsylvania introduced Pennie™ and it remains available to all Pennsylvanians. Pennie works tirelessly to improve the accessibility and affordability of individual market health coverage. It is also the only place that connects Pennsylvanians to financial assistance to reduce the cost of coverage and care, previously available on Healthcare.gov. Pennie's goal is to make it easier for Pennsylvanians to access coverage through education, assistance, and improved customer service.
The Insurance Department and Pennie strongly recommend Pennsylvanians shop around for the best plan to fit their individual, family, and financial needs, even if they are currently enrolled in a health insurance plan through Pennie. A change in rates can potentially result in a decrease in subsidies, so consumers are encouraged to shop around and compare plans. Pennsylvanians can begin shopping for health and dental coverage during Pennie's Open Enrollment Period, November 1, 2021 through January 15, 2022.
Consumers looking to learn more about health insurance should visit the department's dedicated Health Insurance page. To learn more about Pennie™ visit Pennie 101.
Pennsylvanians with insurance questions can contact the Insurance Department Consumer Services Bureau online or at 1-877-881-6388.