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Georgia Health Insurance for Individuals and Families

By population, Georgia is the ninth largest state in the U.S.1 Approximately 12percent of its 10.3 million residents are uninsured—a tie for the nation’s third-highest uninsured population with Arizona, Florida, Mississippi and Utah.2 This rate has improved from 22 percent in 2014, the first year the Affordable Care Act’s individual mandate took effect.3

Will rising individual health insurance premiums make coverage unaffordable to Georgians and reverse this improvement? Georgia insurance officials in September 2017 approved average rateincreases of more than 50 percent for 2018 Obamacare plans.4 As in other markets, political uncertainty, especially around cost-sharing reduction payments(CSR), has been cited as the reason for relatively significant premium hikes.5 The Trump administration announced on Oct. 12, 2017, that it would stop paying insurers federal funds for this subsidy, which helps eligible individuals and families reduce out-of-pocket healthcare expenses.6 When filing 2018 rates Georgia insurers proactively requested rate increases in anticipation this might occur.

Georgia residents do have several options when it comes to selecting healthcare benefits. Individual major medical insurance, employer-based major medical coverage, Medicare and Medicaid qualify as ACA-compliant plans. Georgians may also purchase supplemental, dental and temporary policies that can help lower their out-of-pocket healthcare spending, whether or not they have an Obamacare plan.

What can GA residents do if they are uninsured or underinsured?

Find health insurance now

Georgia’s 2018 Obamacare open enrollment period:

November 1, 2017–January 14, 2018

GA healthcare coverage options available year-round

If you live in Georgia, you can purchase additional health benefits to help with dental and medical expenses—expected and unexpected, large and small—throughout the year. You can buy these plans whether or not you have ACA-compliant coverage. Plus, there’s no open enrollment period for these products, which means you can apply any time and not just during ACA open or special enrollment periods.

Short term medical

Short Term Medical

Temporarily uninsured? Secure healthcare benefits for 30–90 days.

Hospital Plan

Hospital Plan

Have a long-term plan for the unexpected. Hospital, surgical and critical illness benefits.

Medical Bundle

Medical Bundle

This blend covers more healthcare costs. Fixed-benefit indemnity + short term medical.

Supplemental Insurance

Supplemental

Get help with high-deductibles. Lump-sum benefits for illnesses and injuries.

Dental

Dental

Flash a gleaming smile with oral health benefits for your budget.

Telemedicine

Telemedicine

Access low-cost healthcare, anywhere—24 hours a day, 365 days a year

Help is on the way!

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Obamacare marketplace—individual and family coverage

Subsidy-eligible ACA plans for premium and out-of-pocket relief

Individual and family health insurance plans are available to Georgia residents through HealthCare.gov, which is the federal Obamacare exchange. Those who live in Georgia can also buy ACA plans in the private health insurance market from a health insurance producer or company.

ACA exchange name: HealthCare.gov

Type: Federally facilitated

Average 2017 benchmark planpremium(before tax credit subsidy): $2867

Average 2017 benchmark plan premium (after tax credit subsidy): $2078

Average 2017 rate change: 15 percent9

Unofficial average 2018 rate change: Georgia insurers received approval for an average rate increase of 50 percent in 2018.10

Georgia's on-and off-marketplace individual health insurance plans

The following health insurance carriers filed 2018 rates for individual plans in Georgia11:

  • Blue Cross and Blue Shield – average rate increase of 57.5 percent; BCBS is pulling out of 74 of 159 counties in Georgia
  • Kaiser Foundation Health Plan – average rate increase of 56.7 percent
  • Alliant Health Plans – average rate increase of 53.3 percent
  • Ambetter of Peach State – average rate increase of 51 percent

GA health insurance options beyond ACA exchanges

Georgia residents who do not qualify for Obamacare subsidies or prefer to shop away from the ACA exchanges may do so. The off-exchange market may include additional major medical plan options.

What if I live in Georgia and can’t afford health insurance?

If the lowest-cost bronze Obamacare plan available to you costs more than 8.16 percent ofyour household income, including any premium tax credit subsidy you receive, you may qualify for an affordability exemption.12In this circumstance, if your exemption application is approved, you would not be required to have an ACA-compliant health insurance plan and could look for affordable alternatives to help you pay for healthcare expenses. Such options may include short term medical insurance, supplemental benefits, hospital plans, or a medical bundle.

How to find the best affordable health insurance

Paying for healthcare deductibles and medical bills

Ultimately, the best insurance benefits are those that work with yourhealthcareand budgetary needs. Minnesotans can follow these steps to help keep their monthly plan premiums, annual deductible amount and medical bills as low and manageable as possible.

Determine what you need

Determine what you need

Do you need major medical coverage, supplemental benefits or both? Are you looking for a temporary plan while in between ACA-compliant coverage?

Consider your health and finances

Consider your health and finances

Do you have preexisting conditions? Do you qualify for income-based premium tax credits from an ACA exchange?

Explore your coverage options

Explore your coverage options

Do you want to keep monthly premiums as low as possible and use additional benefits to manage a high deductible?Are you self-employed? What can you afford to spend?

Get free health insurance quotes

Get free health insurance quotes

Once you have an idea of what products interest you and meet your needs, it’s time to find out what coverage will cost you. Compare plan premiums and benefits to find your match.

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1United States Census Bureau. “Annual Estimates of the Resident Population for the United States, Regions, States and Puerto Rico: April 1, 2010 to July 1, 2016.” https://www.census.gov/data/tables/2016/demo/popest/state-total.html

2The Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation. “Health Insurance Coverage of the Total Population. Timeframe: 2015.” http://www.kff.org/state-category/health-coverage-uninsured/

3The Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation. “The Georgia Health Care Landscape.” Sept. 20, 2014. https://www.kff.org/health-reform/fact-sheet/the-georgia-health-care-landscape

4Miller, Andy. “Insurance Premiums on Georgia’s Obamacare Exchange Could Go Up an Average 50%.” Georgia Health News. Sept. 28, 2017. http://www.macon.com/news/local/article175842756.html

5Ibid

6 Mathews, Anna Wilde. "Health Insurers Face Big Financial Hit After Trump Move to End ACA Subsidies." The Wall Street Journal. Oct. 13, 2017. https://www.wsj.com/articles/health-insurers-face-big-financial-hit-after-trump-move-to-end-aca-subsidies-1507902956

7 Cox, Cynthia, et al. “2017 Premium Changes and Insurer Participation in the Affordable Care Act’s Health Insurance Marketplaces. Table 1: Monthly Silver Premiums and Financial Assistance for a 40 Year Old Non-Smoker Making $30,000/Year.” The Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation. Last updated Nov. 1, 2016. https://www.kff.org/health-reform/issue-brief/2017-premium-changes-and-insurer-participation-in-the-affordable-care-acts-health-insurance-marketplaces

8Ibid

9Herron, Janna. “Here’s How Much Obamacare Premiums are Rising in All 50 States.” The Fiscal Times. Nov. 1, 2016. http://www.thefiscaltimes.com/2016/11/01/Here-s-How-Much-Obamacare-Premiums-Are-Rising-All-50-States

10Miller, Andy. “Insurance Premiums on Georgia’s Obamacare Exchange Could Go Up an Average 50%.” Georgia Health News. Sept. 28, 2017. http://www.macon.com/news/local/article175842756.html

11Ibid

12HealthCare.gov. “How to Claim an Exemption Because 2017 Marketplace Health Coverage Is Considered Unaffordable Based on Your Projected Annual Household Income.” Accessed Sept. 13, 2017.https://www.healthcare.gov/exemptions-tool/#/results/2017/details/marketplace-affordability