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Nebraska's ACA insurer seeks 3.7 percent increase in 2019

LINCOLN, Neb. (AP) — Nebraska residents who use the Affordable Care Act's marketplace for health insurance could see a much smaller rate increase in 2019 compared to previous years.

Health insurer Medica says it is seeking a 3.7 percent increase in rates next year, which is sharply lower than in the past. Premiums for the state's lone Obamacare insurer rose 31 percent last year and 53 percent in 2016. The new proposed rates were published Monday by the Nebraska Department of Insurance.

Medica vice president Geoff Bartsh says the rate adjustment is smaller because premiums have caught up to growing medical expenses.

Nearly 90,000 Nebraska residents purchase health insurance through the marketplace. Medica is also proposing to reduce rates on its Medica with CHI Health insurance, which is available in 23 eastern Nebraska counties.

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