DENVER, CO– Today, Representative Dylan Roberts, Senator Kerry Donovan and Representative Chris Kennedy unveiled innovative, first-in-the-nation legislation to lower the cost of health care and increase consumer choice by creating the Colorado Affordable Health Care Option.
“Today, we have introduced a bill that will give Coloradans relief they deserve: lower insurance premiums and real choice on the individual health insurance market,” said Rep. Roberts, D-Avon. “After several years of work with our constituents, consumers, hospitals, insurers, and many others, we are excited to introduce this bold step forward for our state. The Colorado Option will provide choice and competition for Colorado families, and the status quo of being forced to pay outrageous premiums because it’s the only option will be over.”
“The health care industry isn’t working for Coloradans. Everywhere I go I hear people struggling with not being able to access or afford the care they need,” said Sen. Donovan. “The Colorado Affordable Health Care Option is a unique, balanced solution that works to address the high cost of healthcare by asking big hospitals to be part of the solution to increase choice and lower costs. I came to Denver with the promise to put my constituents first and that is what I am doing with this bill.”
“Colorado families are struggling to afford the cost of health care and are working harder and harder to get ahead as hospital corporations make record profits,” said Rep. Kennedy, D-Lakewood. “By creating the Colorado Option, we’re giving consumers a new choice for insurance that will cover the services they need at a lower cost.”
From fostering health care cooperatives to ending surprise medical billing, House and Senate Democrats have passed innovative legislation that has saved consumers money.
However, despite these gains, Colorado families still pay too much for health insurance, and 22 out of 64 counties have only one health insurance carrier. Furthermore, research shows that one-fifth of Coloradans do not seek care because of affordability concerns.
To lower the cost of health care and increase competition, this bill creates the Colorado Affordable Health Care Option. As a public-private partnership, this health insurance plan would be available to Coloradans who purchase their coverage on the individual market. The Colorado Option will offer a similar benefit design and structure to existing plans offered on the exchange. The plan works to reduce premiums by seven to 20 percent, depending on the region, by holding down the state’s near highest-in-the nation profit margins at the largest hospitals. The plan will be widely available across the state– increasing competition, options, and access to affordable health care.