The News Courier in Athens, Alabama

State and Nation

September 25, 2013

State health insurance marketplace slightly below U.S. average

TUSCALOOSA — With Alabama's federally facilitated health insurance marketplace launching next week, the Obama administration has released figures showing the typical plan in Alabama will be slightly cheaper than the national average in most cases.

The basic plan is called bronze. The Department of Health and Human Services says lowest-cost bronze plan in Alabama averages $247 a month, while the national average is $249. The next step up is the sliver plan. The average cost for the lowest-priced silver plan is $303 and then $318 for the second lowest-priced silver plan. That compares to national averages of $310 and $328.

The federal government created Alabama's marketplace because Gov. Robert Bentley chose not to have a state-run marketplace.

Consumers can review the plans at healthcare.gov. Coverage will start Jan. 1.

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