Enrollment for Obamacare is open but policies are expensive
Obamacare enrollment for healthcare coverage in 2017 is officially open, but insurance agents say policies are nowhere near affordable.
In South Dakota, Dakota Care and Wellmark left the marketplace for 2017. Avera and Sanford are the only two carriers left for south Dakotans. Outside of the marketplace, plans are up 5 percent and inside, plans are up about 25 to 45 percent over the last year. That's due to the companies dropping out of the marketplace and the remaining carriers raising their prices to balance out the rising medical costs.
People over 60, could pay an average of $1,400 to $2,000 a month, and for people in their mid-twenties, the cost for coverage is between $250 to $500. Insurance agents say that the high costs are affecting the majority of people in South Dakota.
"Healthcare is what we get from our doctors in the hospital. Health insurance is what we purchase to transfer the risk and we're not seeing a decrease in the cost of healthcare and I don't know. This is not an easy fix," said Dan McGuire, Black Hills Insurance Agency.
To have coverage starting January 1, people need to have a plan by December 15. The last day to sign up for Obamacare is January 31.