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New Study: Without Extension Of ARPA Benefits, Americans Could Face Higher Premiums In Exchanges

posted by AHIP

on June 29, 2021

Avalere Health Examines Impact Without Congressional Action to Extend Tax Credits and Eliminate Uncertainty; Consumers’ Costs Could Jump by Hundreds of Dollars or More Every Year

WASHINGTON, D.C. – June 29, 2021 – According to new research conducted by Avalere Health for AHIP released today, Americans buying their own health coverage are poised to face premium increases in 2023 if key provisions of the American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) of 2021 are not extended beyond 2022.

Included in ARPA, signed into law by President Biden on March 11, 2021, is a temporary increase in exchange premium tax credits for people already eligible for assistance under the Affordable Care Act (ACA). The law also extends eligibility to people with incomes over 400% of the federal poverty level (FPL), for 2021 and 2022. Under these provisions, approximately 18 million Americans now have access to lower-premium exchange plans – and approximately 8 million are newly eligible for lower premiums.[1]  Enhanced APRA tax credits are estimated to save current exchange enrollees an average of 25 percent of current premiums after subsidies.[2] These ARPA tax credit enhancements are set to expire on December 31, 2022.

The data, out today, shows that if the ARPA policy lapses, consumers will face significant out-of-pocket premium increases in 2023:

  • A27-year-old earning $19,191 per year (149% FPL) could be facing an annual increase in out-of-pocket premiums of almost $800 per year.
  • A 46-year-old person earning $41,860 per year (325% FPL) could be facing an increase of $1,300.
  • A 55-year-old couple earning $70,551 per year (405% FPL) could be facing an increase of more than $9,000.

“Every American deserves access to affordable, high-quality coverage and equitable care,” said Matt Eyles, AHIP president and CEO. “After more than a year of an unprecedented pandemic, when reliable, affordable health coverage has been so essential to the health and well-being of Americans, we urge Congress to permanently adopt these tax credit enhancements to protect the coverage on which hundreds of millions of Americans rely on.”

If Congress does not act, exchange enrollees will face higher out-of-pocket premiums for the 2023 plan year. Millions of Americans will see this impact on their premiums when they receive renewal letters by November 1, 2022. Congress can get ahead of these looming, disruptive cost increases by extending or making permanent this policy that has helped millions of Americans.

In addition to national data, as part of the study, Avalere Health estimated the expected increases in costs for Americans in seven cities and counties. For example, Avalere examined how the elimination of these ARPA provisions would impact people in Phoenix, AZ; Arapahoe County, CO; Broward Country, FL; Atlanta, GA; Cleveland, OH; Las Vegas, NV; and Philadelphia, PA.

About AHIP

AHIP is the national association whose members provide health care coverage, services, and solutions to hundreds of millions of Americans every day. We are committed to market-based solutions and public-private partnerships that make health care better and coverage more affordable and accessible for everyone. Visit www.ahip.org to learn how working together, we are Guiding Greater Health.

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[1]  Avalere Health. “Measuring Scope of COVID-19 Relief Coverage Expansion Provisions.” Available here.

[2] Kaiser Family Foundation. “How the American Rescue Plan Act Affects Subsidies for Marketplace Shoppers and People Who Are Uninsured.” March 25, 2021. Available here.