Estimates show TN would have among lowest ACA premiums - WSMV Channel 4

Estimates show TN would have among lowest ACA premiums

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NASHVILLE, TN (WSMV) -

New figures just out from the federal government show Tennesseans who buy insurance on the Affordable Care Act's health exchange will pay less than just about anyone else in the country.

The Obama administration released numbers Wednesday that show the premiums for Tennesseans who want to buy insurance through the Health Insurance Marketplace are second-lowest, only behind Minnesota. The highest premiums will be in Wyoming.

Deborah Whitman doesn't have insurance where she works. She's part-time and is anxious to hear the details of what the Affordable Care Act has to offer her.

"This is my pocket it's going to come out of, so it bothers me," Whitman said. "Prescriptions, premiums are a major issue for me."

That information will be available Oct. 1, when Americans can begin shopping in the Health Insurance Marketplace.

The federal government released some preliminary estimates of those premiums that, in some cases, will be subsidized with a government tax credit.

For a family of four in Tennessee with an income of $50,000 a year, the prices will range from $128 for the lowest-cost "Bronze" plan after tax credits, up to $584 for the second-lowest cost "Silver" plan before the tax credit.

"That's still a lot," Whitman said.

Bernard Health insurance advisor Alex Tolbert helps explain the differences between the plans.

Under the bronze plan, for example, he said the premiums and co-pays are lower. But you might have a limited choice for hospitals and doctors.

"For example, Blue Cross Blue Shield of Tennessee is offering a new network: network E," Tolbert said.

Network E would cover care at St. Thomas Hospital, for example, but would not pay for care at Vanderbilt Medical Center or HCA hospitals.

"So, if you're happy with St. Thomas, as the hospital that's in-network, network E would be a good option for you," Tolbert said.

The non-partisan Kaiser Family Foundation has several resources available for you to estimate what your premium will be. For more information, visit: http://kff.org/.

More information will be released beginning Oct. 1 at http://www.healthcare.gov/.

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