The news is full of reports on the premiums being paid for health coverage acquired through the Affordable Care Act’s insurance exchanges. Depending on the political spin, they’re either onerously expensive or ridiculously cheap.
Could the truth—what it really costs for regular people to buy insurance—be somewhere in the middle? Yes, according to the private online brokerage EHealth. It serves individuals who don’t qualify for federal insurance subsidies, so its premium data reflect what policy holders actually pay.
The average monthly premium was $350 for EHealth customers who bought insurance in October and November 2013, when early adopters began signing up to avoid penalties under the ACA’s individual mandate.
In December, however, premiums dropped sharply. Since then, the average premium has hovered a few dollars above $270 per month.