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How a D.C. Court’s Decision Could Mean Unaffordable Health Care for Mississippians

JACKSON, Miss. – If you bought healthcare through the federal insurance exchange, the cost could go way up if a decision by a three judge panel at the U.S. Court of Appeals in Washington D.C. stays. They ruled that subsidies should only be available to policies bought through state run insurance exchanges instead of federal exchanges, like the one in Mississippi and 35 other states.

However, the law’s supporters contend that the language was a mistake, and that it was the clear intent of Congress to allow subsidies in either marketplace. That opinion was also upheld by the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals Tuesday.

A study done by independent health care consulting firm, Avalere Health, estimates that Mississippi health care premiums could go up 80 to 95 percent if subsidies become unavailable for policies bought on the federal marketplace. That would translate to unaffordable insurance to more than 60,000 Mississippians.

It is likely the Obama administration will ask the D.C. court to rehear the case with the full 11-member D.C. panel and that a final decision would be left up to the U.S. Supreme Court.

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