Many in Massachusetts facing higher health insurance rates

The increase affects a small portion of the state's overall commercial insurance market

Photo Courtesy: MGNonline

BOSTON (AP) — About 300,000 Massachusetts residents who buy their own health insurance or work for small businesses are about to see their premiums jump more than 6 percent on average.

The increase approved by the state Division of Insurance that takes effect next year is more than double the rise in premiums this year and triple the rise in 2014.

Although the increase affects a small portion of the state’s overall commercial insurance market of about 4 million, analysts say it may signal similar increases across the broader market.

Insurers say they face rising costs based largely on more people using expensive drugs and a rise in the use of expensive medical services.

The president of the Retailers Association of Massachusetts tells The Boston Globe higher premiums force small businesses to cut back elsewhere.

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