Cost of Care Drives Premium Increase in 2024

Father and daughter working together at home

Increases in the price of medical care and drugs negatively impacts rates for 2024.

Berlin, Vermont – Rising hospital and pharmaceutical costs are causing an increase in premiums for Vermonters. For 2024, Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Vermont is proposing rate increases of 15.5% for individual health plans and 14.5% for the small group health plans. The primary driver behind these rates – 10.1 and 9.4% of the total – are attributed to hospital budgets and the higher prices for inpatient and outpatient services and pharmaceutical prices. Additional cost factors account for the remainder of the impact, including the cost of care for COVID-19.

Blue Cross is actively engaged in state policy discussions that support members, customers and communities. Several changes enacted recently will benefit Vermonters including the addition of hearing aids to covered benefits, continuing the separate individual and small group marketplaces, and enhanced “Silver Loading” to draw down larger federal subsidies. Together these changes are positive developments for Vermonters purchasing insurance through the state’s Affordable Care Act marketplace – Vermont Health Connect.

The recent announcement that Blue Cross VT and Michigan are pursuing an affiliation is an exciting development that will allow two nonprofit mission-driven organizations to work together to access expanded technology, expertise, and operational resources in the future. The partnership must be approved by regulators before any collaborative activities can begin. 2024 premiums are unaffected by the pending affiliation. Upon regulatory approval, the two organizations will begin to implement the expansion of shared technology. Over time, these new resources are expected to improve operational support for providers, facilitate the exchange of information to drive health care reform, and improve our members’ experience as they navigate the system of care.

Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Vermont is the state’s only local, nonprofit health plan. For over 40 years, the company has been enhancing the health and well-being of the Vermonters we serve by offering innovative plans to individuals, older Vermonters, and businesses. Our employees are dedicated to developing new ways to support high-quality care, programs, and events that promote wellness. Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Vermont is an independent licensee of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association.