A big Web broker, eHealth Inc. (Nasdaq:EHTH), has used its own site activity data to come up with preliminary data on sales of individual and family major medical coverage for 2015.
The broker sells Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA) public exchange plan coverage, or exchange qualified health plan (QHP) coverage, in California and in all of the states in which U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) oversees PPACA exchange coverage.
The company also sells PPACA-compliant individual and family coverage throughout the country.
The second annual PPACA open enrollment period began Oct. 15 and ends Feb. 15, 2015. The application deadline for coverage that starts Jan. 1, 2015, is Dec. 15.
The early 2015 market activity statistics eHealth developed reflect the purchases of consumers who did not use PPACA QHP premium subsidy tax credits. The numbers also include results from surveys the non-subsidy consumers filled out after shopping for coverage.
To learn more about what eHealth is seeing, read on.
1. The average premium for individual coverage has increased 16 percent
The average monthly premiums for individual 2015 coverage rose to $315, up 16 percent from the 2014 average.
The average premium for family coverage increased 14 percent, to $760.
The average monthly individual premium was $149 for catastrophic plans, $297 for bronze plans, $346 for silver plans, $375 for gold plans, and $436 for platinum plans.
See also: 3 important health enrollment findings
2. The average individual plan deductible has decreased 9 percent
Consumers seem to be making more of an effort to think about out-of-pocket cost hurdles this year.
The average annual individual coverage deductible has fallen 9 percent, to $3,776, and the average annual family coverage deductible has fallen 4 percent, to $7,448.
3. The percentage of shoppers who already have health coverage has increased
One question is whether PPACA incentives and penalties are encouraging more of the uninsured to get covered, or simply churning insured people from one plan to another.
At eHealth, the percentage of early enrollment period shoppers who said they were uninsured has fallen to 27 percent this year, from 35 percent during the fourth quarter of 2013.
About 32 percent said they are shopping now because their coverage will end soon, and 20 percent said the cost of their current coverage is increasingly. About 20 percent of the shoppers said they are looking for coverage with better benefits.
See also: 5 exchange plan re-enrollment stories