Understanding Affordable Care Act/Obamacare: More specific costs released by the government

We compared rates in Ohio & Cleveland

CLEVELAND - The government just released information on how much you should expect to pay for insurance under the Affordable Care Act. But the answer isn't necessarily black and white.

"I am trying to work to pay my bills and sometimes insurance comes last on the list to pay for," said Clare Roche, who is a full-time student at Cleveland State University. She does not have health insurance.

"I'm a bit concerned… Just if anything happens," Roche said. "Random things occur every day and I am concerned that I might not have the means to, if something was to happen, to afford it."

The Obamacare plans are broken down into Catastrophic, Bronze, Silver, Gold and Platinum.  Each one gets more expensive as you step up the ladder.

[More information on the Affordable Care Act can be found here: http://on.wews.com/16YbgAV ]

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) reported the exact price amounts for each person's situation are not yet known, but it did just release some cost-level examples. On average, a 27-year-old in Ohio is looking at anywhere from $131 per month for Catastrophic to $243 for the lowest Gold plan. That's before tax credits. That same person making $25,000 a year would pay $110 on the lowest Bronze plan after tax credits.

Meanwhile, a family of four in Ohio making $50,000 a year on average would pay $156 per month on the lowest Bronze plan after the tax credit.

Director of Strategy for Medical Mutual of Ohio Gregory Young told us every insurer will be using the "Modified Community Rating" system that calculates rates based on numerous factors.

"What's your age? Do you smoke? How many members are there in the family? And the geography...where do you live?" Young said.

And it will depend on which level of insurance you choose.

HHS said whichever level you pick, each plan offers the same benefits and quality of care. The different levels represent just how much you'll pay in premiums and out-of-pocket expenses. However, Young said don't be surprised when you sign up here in the Buckeye State.

"We know that rates are going to be higher in Ohio," Young said. "We know that because the mandates that are in place due to the Affordable Care Act.  We know that because of the taxes and fees that have been added."

For example, HHS broke down several metropolitan areas where a 27-year-old in Cleveland at $25,000 per year could get a rate of $93 per month after the tax credit.  Plus, a family of four with $50,000 a year could pay $94 per month after the tax credit.

However, the same people in Washington D.C, Indianapolis and Dallas will pay quite a bit less. Like a family of four in D.C. pays nothing after the tax credit.

Whatever the situation is here in Cleveland, Roche told us she's ready to explore what her health care insurance options are.

"I'm interested to take a look no matter what and see how it really works out," she said with a smile.

Here are a couple of links that could help you. This gives a breakdown of the premiums and some comparisons: http://on.wews.com/16AsDDK

This shows state by state rates that are expected: http://on.wews.com/15uFaif

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