Testimony: Health Insurance Premiums Under the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act

On May 20, 2013, Topher Spiro, Vice President for Health Policy, testified before the Committee on Energy & Commerce and the Subcommittee on Oversight & Investigations on the premium impact of the Affordable Care Act.

Mr. Chairman, Ranking Member, and members of the Committee—thank you for the opportunity to testify today about the premium impact of the Affordable Care Act. My testimony will make five key points:

  1. Concern has focused on the premium impact for young adults. But young adults who now have non-employer coverage and higher incomes are a small fraction of the population.
  2. Recent studies by health insurance companies and actuaries affiliated with the insurance industry lack transparency, are self-serving, and omit key factors.
  3. These studies do not measure up when compared with actual rate filings and analyses by independent experts.
  4. Emerging evidence indicates that the Exchanges are working as intended—competition among plans and providers is already lowering premiums.
  5. Premiums should not be the exclusive focus of investigation. In the new, modernized market, consumers will get a lot more for their money.
This article was originally published in U.S. House of Representatives, Committee on Energy & Commerce, Subcommittee on Oversight & Investigations.