Since its implementation, ObamaCare has wreaked havoc on Alaska, leading to higher premiums, worsening access to care, more dependency, and skyrocketing spending. The Graham-Cassidy-Heller-Johnson proposal in Congress would give Alaska a sensible way out of the ObamaCare mess, helping unwind a disastrous Medicaid expansion while lowering premiums for Alaskan families who buy insurance on their own in the individual market.
According to data provided by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, premiums in Alaska’s individual insurance market have more than tripled under ObamaCare, growing from $4,100 per year in 2013 to a whopping $12,500 per year in 2017, and eventually forcing the state to create a state-funded reinsurance program to keep the insurance market out of a death spiral.
Skyrocketing premiums have also led to declining enrollment. In March 2015, more than 21,000 Alaskans had enrolled in plans through HealthCare.gov. But by February 2017, that enrollment had dropped by a third, dwindling to just 14,000 individuals. According to state data, the number of Alaska Natives and American Indians enrolled in the individual insurance market have dropped by nearly 45 percent since 2015. And even those who sign up for plans have no real choices. In 2017, just one insurer sold health insurance plans in the state’s individual market.