Those who buy health insurance through Colorado's individual marketplace are expected to see cheaper premiums in 2020.

Gov. Jared Polis announced Thursday that Coloradans will see an average decrease of 20.2% across the state when buying health insurance with Connect for Health Colorado, the state's health insurance marketplace. The decrease in rates is attributed to more competitors on the market and the introduction of a reinsurance plan passed by state legislators earlier this year. The reinsurance program helps insurance companies with large health claims using money from the state.

This is the first time the exchange has seen decreases across the board for all full-price plans, according to Connect for Health Colorado Communications and Marketing Program Manager Monica Caballeros.

"This is just one part of our bold agenda to reduce sky-high health care costs," Polis said in a press release. "The days of being ripped off on health care are finally ending in Colorado."

Grand Junction residents who buy health insurance through Connect for Health Colorado can expect to save an average of more than $7,700 throughout next year. Western Slope residents, including many in the mountain communities, could save an average of more than $10,000 next year. Other rural parts of the state will see decreases of more than 30%, the governor announced.

"These decreases translate into real savings for Coloradans," Colorado Insurance Commissioner Michael Conway said in a statement. "These big premium decreases will give more people the opportunity to access health care for themselves and their families. For those with coverage today, these premium decreases will make life easier, which is why we come to work every day."

Those who do not receive financial help on their health insurance can expect to pay roughly $527 per month in 2020 compared to $655 per month this year. Mesa County premiums will decrease on average from $802 to $595 per month. Those who do receive financial assistance will likely see a slight increase, going from $114 per month this year to $136 per month on average next year, according to Connect for Health Colorado. However, Mesa County premiums with financial assistance will decrease nearly 13% from an average of $163 per month to $142.

In past years, roughly 8% of Coloradans have bought their health insurance through Connect for Health Colorado.

Next year, eight new insurance companies will offer plans through the marketplace. Open enrollment for 2020 will run from Nov. 1 through Jan. 15. Customers must enroll by Dec. 15 to have coverage in place by Jan. 1.

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