Health insurance rates to decline

    Juneau, Alaska (KINY) Alaska residents will get a huge break on health insurance costs next year.

    Premera Blue Cross Blue Shield, the sole provider for the Alaska individual health insurance market, announced Tuesday that its rates will decrease 26.5 percent for 2018.  That means the average person who paid $1,000 in 2017, will pay about $750 in 2018.

    The decrease is due to a significant reduction in the use of medical services in the past year.  The state also established a new program that addresses high insurance claims separately.  The reduction assumes that the federal health care law will remain in place.

    Alaska State Insurance Director Lori Wing-Heier said it is a step in the right direction.  She predicted a stable market might entice other insurance companies back into Alaska.

     

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