Key Issues

Colorado Health Institute - Informing Policy. Advancing Health.

Key Issues

Key Issues / Health Coverage and the Uninsured / The Three Rs of the Private Insurance Market: Risk, Regulation and Reform

The Three Rs of the Private Insurance Market: Risk, Regulation and Reform

December 5, 2012

CHI provided this fact sheet/presentation to policymakers and other health care leaders who attended the 2012 Hot Issues in Health Care legislative conference.

The purpose of health insurance is to collectively pool risk to protect individuals from incurring large expenditures or losses associated with illness, injury or disability. Colorado has two primary types of health insurance - private and public. In 2011, 66 percent of Coloradans had private health insurance coverage, 18 percent had public coverage, and 16 percent were uninsured.

The private health insurance market is made up of two major components: the individual market - insurance that an individual buys from an insurance plan - and employer-sponsored insurance - offered by companies to their employees. Only about 30 percent of Coloradans have health insurance plans that are subject to regulation by the Colorado Division of Insurance (DOI).

The federal Affordable Care Act includes a number of provisions aimed at increasing the number of Americans with health insurance, such as insurance market regulations, subsidies to purchase private insurance and grants to build health insurance exchanges.

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