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Health insurance costs are not so lush for rural residents



Rural life offers a quiet existence of rolling hills, peaceful country towns, simplicity and obviously higher health insurance premiums for the inhabitants.

A researcher at the University of Minnesota School of Public Health studied the choice and pricing of individual insurance plans across the United States and examined changes in insurer's market participation and plan premiums between 2015 and 2019 to assess their market vulnerability and volatility, according to an article published Monday in Rural News DailyYonder.com.

Research showed that markets with higher volatility and vulnerability have smaller populations and are more rural, and that areas were more likely to have only one insurance company and higher premiums. The reason, according to the researcher, "is probably related to a lack of competition, both in the insurance market and in the healthcare market," according to the news site.

"We know that competition is lowering prices and there is a lot of evidence to suggest that," the researchers told DailyYonger.com. “It talks about competition in the insurance market, as well as suppliers' competition. Often in the countryside you may have a hospital and very few suppliers and specialists. And that lack of competition leads to higher prices.

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