Eric Galatas, Public News Service

Costs for individual health-care coverage could increase by as much as 40 percent next year, if insurance companies get their way with the Colorado Division of Insurance.

Insurers paid more claims than anticipated because people enrolled in individual plans have used more health-care services, according to the division’s preliminary report. Adam Fox, director of strategic engagement for the Colorado Consumer Health Initiative, said the agency’s next step is to see if the proposed rate hikes add up.

“If they don’t, they will be asking insurers to reduce their rates,” he said. “As we have seen in years past, that ends up saving Colorado consumers millions of dollars.”

Fox said the initial filing shows that small employer plans could see single-digit increases or even lower premiums. He added that individuals who qualify for financial assistance through Connect for Health Colorado would get additional tax credits to help defray any rate increases.

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