The federal government has approved Maine's request to reinstate a program that has previously lowered individual insurance premiums.
Under the program, consumers with expensive medical conditions will be placed into an invisible high risk pool. Their medical costs will be paid through their premiums, as well as a $4 per month surcharge on all policyholders in the state.
Bureau of Insurance Superintendent Eric Cioppa says that in a state like Maine with a small population, a few high claims can raise premiums for everyone.
“By subsidizing those high cost claimants, it drives down the premium that everyone pays, and you get a bigger bang for your buck by doing that,” Cioppa says.
Cioppa says the lower premiums will help middle income earners who purchase insurance on the individual market, but who don't qualify for subsidies.