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Maine businesses face hefty cost increases as health reinsurance program goes into effect

A program that’s expected to lower premiums on Maine’s individual health insurance market is set to take effect next January. That’s also when one of the mechanisms to fund the reinsurance program called MGARA kicks in — a monthly surcharge on all health insurance policyholders in the state.

MGARA, the Maine Guaranteed Access Reinsurance Association, is a kind of high-risk pool designed to help people with expensive health conditions get insurance coverage on the individual market and keep premiums low. It does that by creating a fund to help pay those consumers’ high medical bills. One of the sources of money for that fund is a new $4 per month surcharge on all policyholders in the state.

Individually, $4 a month may not sound like a lot. But for employers who offer insurance to their employees, it adds up.

“For some of them, it’s going to be a seven-figure amount,” said Peter Gore, executive vice president of the Maine State Chamber of Commerce.

Asked whether employers are aware that they’ll soon have a new, additional health care cost, Gore said, in most cases, no.

 

 

 

To read the rest of “Maine businesses face hefty cost increases as health reinsurance program goes into effect,” an article byBy Patty Wight, Maine Public, please follow this link to the BDN online.

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