DENVER – October 25, 2022 – The Colorado Division of Insurance announced final rates for the 2023 plan year with an average increase of 10.4%. Most notably, almost all of the lowest cost products in the individual market are not the administration’s Colorado Option plans, but the non-standardized products built by health insurance providers that continue to offer choice and affordability to Colorado consumers in a time of unprecedented inflation.
In response to the finalized rates, Executive Director Amanda Massey stated, “The decisions made by the Polis Administration regarding the Colorado Option were fundamentally contradictory to the stated goal of saving people money on healthcare. The outcome of those decisions are fewer carriers offering individual and small group products to consumers across the state, less competition, and higher premiums. We fully support market-based policies that actually drive down costs, but the result of Colorado’s first-in-the-nation policy shows the Administration chose politics over math.”
The Division of Insurance made a number of decisions impacting 2023 insurance rates that included foregoing traditional cost trends in its rate target methodology, undercounting current inflation for Colorado Option plans, underpricing administrative costs for the Colorado Option plans only, and capping profit and contingency rates for health insurance providers at two percent. These requirements were on top of new insurance benefit mandate requirements approved by the Governor since 2019 that increased the baseline cost of insurance premiums for Coloradans by an estimated 5.5% to 7.9% (or $320 million to $405 million dollars annually).
Health plans submitted their proposed rates to the Commissioner of Insurance, Michael Conway, in June 2022 and this announcement confirmed that the premiums submitted have now been accepted and approved by the Division of Insurance. Consumers shopping on the individual market will be able to enroll in the new plans starting on November 1, 2022. Open enrollment continues through January 15, 2023.