Health insurance companies have filed reports showing that premiums for individual coverage plans purchased in the Affordable Care Act's marketplace in Illinois could increase by up to 45 percent in 2017.
Rate increases being proposed range from 23 percent to 45 percent for Blue Cross Blue Shield of Illinois, up to 21 percent for Coventry Health Care of Illinois, almost 29 percent for Harken Health Insurance Company and over 28 percent for Health Alliance Medical Plans Inc.
The proposed rates are not final. The state's Insurance Department has an August 23 deadline to complete its rate review process.
Blue Cross Blue Shield of Illinois noted that its rate proposals are similar to proposed increases in other U.S. markets.
"No final decisions have been made regarding our 2017 offerings," reads a statement from the insurer. "While some carriers have chosen to exit the market, we are working toward continuing to provide health insurance options for consumers in Illinois. However, that must be done in a sustainable way."
Kathy Waligora with EverThrive Illinois said her group does not "put too much stock in the numbers as they stand right now." That's "because we know the [Insurance Department] is really negotiating the rates up until the last deadline," she told the Chicago Tribune.