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Indiana insurers blame GOP health care sabotage for decision to raise premiums next year

INDIANAPOLIS – Hoosiers are set to face higher premiums on health care next year due largely to efforts Republicans have taken to sabotage the nation’s health care marketplace, last week’s insurance filings show.

The GOP’s year-long health care sabotage is weighing heavily on the two insurers who filed applications to participate in next year’s health care marketplaces. Both companies cited efforts from the Trump Administration and Congressional Republicans as justification for a request for an average premium rate increase of 5.2% for 2019, the Indy Star reported Friday.

CareSource and Celtic Insurance, the two companies who filed their requests, primarily blamed issues with the marketplaces on Republican efforts to end crucial cost-sharing payments and destroy protections that ensure younger and healthy Americans retain insurance. CareSource specifically said that premiums would have fallen by as much as 10% were it not for Republican sabotage; instead, they have claimed they need to raise rates next year by 10% on average. “Efforts to undermine the ACA have directly driven annual premium increases that have priced the desired healthcare coverage out of reach for many consumers,” CareSource Indiana’s President wrote in a letter to Senator Donnelly’s office, according to the Star.

Steps by Republicans to dismantle the existing health care laws had already spurred two other insurance companies to pull out of the Indiana marketplace last summer for similar reasons. Even as health care costs have skyrocketed for Hoosiers, Rep. Braun continues to vocally back the GOP’s sabotage efforts that have damaged the health care system.

“It seems like the only people who don’t realize that Republicans are responsible for skyrocketing health care costs are Rep. Braun and Republicans themselves. They’re ignoring the reality that their sabotage efforts are forcing Hoosiers to pay more for health care, or they think that financial pain is good politics,” said Michael Feldman, spokesman for the Indiana Democratic Party. “While Rep. Braun celebrates his party’s efforts to dismantle the nation’s health care laws, Hoosiers won’t forget who’s responsible for the premium increases they’ll be forced to pay next year.”

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