Rhode Island: Approved 2016 rate increase: 6.5% weighted avg
2019 OPEN ENROLLMENT ENDS (most states)
Time: D H M S
When I last checked in on Rhode Island's 2016 rate increase status, the three companies operating in the state (BCBSRI, Neighborhood and UnitedHealthcare) had requested hikes of 7%, 8.6% and 11% respectively. There was no off-exchange enrollment data, but the exchange-based market share breakdown was roughly 48.5% / 48.5% / 3%. This meant a requested average hike of around 7.9%.
A week or so ago, the approved rate hikes were released for Neighborhood and UHC, along with total enrollments (on+off exchange) for BCBS:
Still unresolved is how much Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Rhode Island may raise rates for its individual plans, which cover about 25,000 people. The nonprofit insurer initially requested an 18-percent increase, but no decision has yet been made because, by law, its rate hike requests are reviewed in a separate process that reserves a key role for the state's attorney general.
Apart from Blue Cross and Blue Shield, only two other insurers offer plans for individuals and their families. They include Neighborhood Health Plan of Rhode Island, which was approved for a base rate hike of 8 percent (it requested 10.8 percent) and a weighted increase of 5.8 percent. United Healthcare got permission to raise the base rate 4.1 percent (it requested 11.1 percent) and a weighted average of 2.7 percent.
BCBS's original 18% request was actually dropped to just 7% in July, "partially due to the fact that in the FY 2016 budget (see below), the HealthSource RI premium fee is lower than initially proposed." Meanwhile, I've also confirmed that UHC's on+off exchange total enrollment is just 832 people.
That leaves two missing data points: BCBS's approved rate hike and Neighborhood Health Plan's off-exchange enrollment (they have around 15,000 on the exchange). It's possible that Neighborhood doesn't even sell off-exchange policies, in which case this is their total number.
Assuming that's the case and assuming BCBS ends up with their 7% hike, here's what Rhode Island looks like for the individual market next year:
That would bring the overall weighted average down to 6.5%.