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NY, Vermont Have Highest Health Insurance Costs

POSTED on January 27, 2016

New York residents pay the most for basic health insurance, whereas residents of New Mexico pay the least, according to a new study released by personal finance website GOBankingRates.com.

The study compared silver plans -- the most popular plan according to the Department of Health and Human Services -- offered through the national or state-level insurance exchanges administered through the Affordable Care Act.

The lowest-cost silver plans for each state were ranked based on the favorability of the following cost factors:

  • The plan's monthly premium
  • The deductible
  • The emergency care copay
  • The copay for care from a primary physician

"Higher insurance costs in many states are tied to high costs of living or being in rural areas," said Elyssa Kirkham, the lead GOBankingRates reporter on the study. "Where costs of living are high, like New York or South Carolina, care is also likely to be more expensive, a cost which insurers pass to enrollees through higher premiums."

"Competition is another key factor of health insurance costs," said Kirkham. "In rural states like Wyoming and Oklahoma, fewer residents means a smaller health insurance market with fewer options, where insurers can charge more without losing customers. Of course, subsidies can offset these costs, but this form of assistance also varies widely from state to state," she said.

The 10 States With the Highest Health Insurance Costs

  1. New York
  2. South Carolina
  3. Alabama
  4. New Jersey
  5. Mississippi
  6. Oklahoma
  7. Indiana
  8. Delaware
  9. Wyoming
  10. Colorado

The 10 States With the Lowest Health Insurance Costs

  1. New Mexico
  2. Utah
  3. California
  4. Texas
  5. Pennsylvania
  6. Michigan
  7. District of Columbia
  8. Hawaii
  9. Oregon
  10. Idaho

To see where your state ranked, click here.

Additional insights:

  • The state with the highest monthly premium is New York at $366 a month, compared with New Mexico, which has the lowest monthly premium at $181 a month.
  • Primary doctor copays vary widely by state. West Virginia and Indiana have no copays, but Californians' copays are the highest -- $250.
  • Deductible costs range from $1,300 in North Dakota to $6,850 in South Carolina, which is more than five times the price.
  • Despite New Mexico's low costs, many residents have encountered difficulties in January 2016 getting their health coverage due to a high volume of December 2015 health insurance applications still being processed.

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