June 13, 2021


Keep Fit & Healthy

New health insurance plan aimed at cutting costs is headed to Colorado governor’s desk

3 min read

A Colorado bill aimed at lowering the cost of health insurance is through the Colorado legislature and on to the governor, who has indicated it’s a top priority for his office.

HB21-1232 was supposed to be a full public option — that is, the state offered an insurance plan — but that fell by the wayside during negotiations. What received final approval Monday night in the Colorado House went through several changes.

Under the bill, the state will require insurers to offer the Colorado Health Benefit Option by Jan. 1, 2023, in all 64 counties. It’ll be available for the individual and small group marketplaces, which cover about 15% of Coloradans, and by 2025, its premiums will have to be 15% less than the rates insurers offered in 2021 (adjusted for medical inflation). It will also set benchmarks for the types of care covered under the plan, including pediatric care and other essential benefits.

Bill sponsors hope the measure will get more uninsured people to buy insurance.

“At the end of the day, we have created a ‘Colorado Option,’ which means it is available to every Coloradan who wants to buy it, it’s going to be affordable and it’s going to be quality,” Avon Democratic Rep. Dylan Roberts said. “And no longer we subject just to what insurance companies want to offer and where they want to offer it — we are recognizing that every resident of Colorado deserves access to an affordable insurance plan.”

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