RUPRI Health Center Examines Rural Premium Trends in Health Insurance Marketplace

Health Insurance Marketplaces: Premium Trends in Rural Areas

Since 2014, when the Health Insurance Marketplaces (HIMs) authorized by the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA) were implemented, considerable premium changes have been observed in the marketplaces. This policy brief from the RUPRI Center for Rural Health Policy Analysis assesses the changes in average HIM plan premiums from 2014 to 2016, before accounting for subsidies, with an emphasis on the widening variation across rural and urban places.

Data for 2016 provide clear evidence that HIM premiums have grown disproportionately in rural places; in contrast, the first two years (2014-2015) of HIM premium data exhibited only weak tendencies toward rural disparities.