Tennesseans need a president willing to work with republicans in Congress to go step-by-step to replace Obamacare with reforms that provide families with access to health care plans that meet their needs and budgets
Senate health committee Chairman Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.) today made the following statement on reports that Tennessee insurance companies will have to raise health insurance premiums by as much as 62 percent next year, as a result of increased costs due to Obamacare:
“Six years ago, at the White House Summit, on behalf of congressional republicans, I told the president we needed to go step-by-step to expand access to quality health insurance with the goal of reducing health care costs. Instead, he signed a 2,700-page bill which took over the health care system, the federal pocketbook, and the family budget. We now know for sure that federal regulation is not the prescription for lower health care costs.”
Senator Alexander continued, “Due to Obamacare’s expensive mandates and regulations, tens of thousands of Tennesseans who buy individual Obamacare policies could see their health care premiums go up again next year by double digits. Some will also lose their current health plan as one health insurer has been forced to stop selling Obamacare plans in Tennessee altogether due to rising costs. Today, more than ever, Tennesseans need a President and Congress willing to go step-by-step to repeal Obamacare and replace it with common sense, market-based reforms that provide states and families with access to the health care plans that meet their needs and their budgets.”
This week, health insurance providers throughout Tennessee submitted their proposed plan rates for 2017 to the Tennessee Commissioner of Insurance. All health insurers requested a double digit increase, with the highest being 62 percent. So far, hundreds of health plans across the nation have requested this double-digit increase, often citing increased costs due to Obamacare.
BlueCross BlueShield of Tennessee, the state’s largest carrier, raised premiums by 19 percent in 2014, and 36 percent last year. Last month, UnitedHealthcare announced that it plans to withdraw any Obamacare plans next year from Tennessee in response to sustaining significant losses due to offering such plans. Last year, Tennessee’s health care cooperative, the Knoxville-based Community Health Alliance, was forced to begin to phase out its Obamacare plans last year after suffering heavy losses as well.