Sebelius apologizes for Healthcare.gov issues; questions now about premium costs

Saying she took the blame for the now-infamous Healthcare.gov rollout fiasco, Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius apologized to members of Congress, saying the launch of the marketplace website has gone "miserably."

Sebelius also says it's past time to lay blame with Americans trying to gain as much information as they can about health insurance changes.

{wbty_audio audio_id="624" audio_title="Sebelius: Time to fix issues"}

Sebelius' time before Congress on Wednesday comes with the Affordable Care Act, also known as Obamacare, taking several public relations hits. The one receiving the most airplay recently has dealt with more than two million Americans losing their current plans because they don't meet the Affordable Care Act minimums for maternity care, emergency visits and mental health care. Another, less publicized assertion comes from the Heritage Center, which says premiums are set to blast off for certain age ranges. Kansas Health Institute Director Dr. Rob St. Peter isn't discounting possible increases are coming for some people, but he also says it's very difficult now to compare apples to apples.

{wbty_audio audio_id="626" audio_title=""}

To get a true comparison, St. Peter says you have to look at the services covered, co-pays, deductibles and co-insurance amounts.

{wbty_audio audio_id="625" audio_title="St. Peter: Have to dig into the numbers"}

An article from KansasWatchdog.org says the average premium for a 27-year-old resident will go up almost 130 percent, from around $87 a month to around $200. The percentage increase goes down as you get older, but the study says a 50-year-old adult may still see a nearly 75-percent increase and a family of four could see a 22-percent increase.

earl and stelouise sidebar

See what is happening with KVOE