ICHRA

ICHRA Colorado: why CO is prime for new benefits model

by Amy

The individual coverage HRA (ICHRA for short) is taking off in Colorado, thanks to a vibrant individual health insurance market (or maybe it's that clean mountain air). Growth in the Colorado market has been consistently strong since ICHRA's inception in 2020; Denver, Boulder, Colorado Springs and Durango are prime territory for ICHRAs to make a big impact. Here's why ICHRAs in Colorado are turning heads.

As a reminder, the individual coverage HRA (ICHRA) was established on a series of regulatory rules and bipartisan legislation to allow business owners of all sizes to reimburse their employees for health insurance (instead of buying it for them.) While there are many benefits of ICHRA, its ability to bring flexibility, predictability and cost control to the employer and personalization and choice for the employee is what sets it apart.

While Denver has the most ICHRAs in the state (and the most employees on our platform), Boulder, Colorado Springs and Durango aren't far behind. ICHRA is also widespread throughout the state; we have clients in 49 cities and towns across Colorado. In terms of workers using their HRA, Colorado is a top-ten state for number of employees on our platform.

Read on for more info on why ICHRA works so well in Colorado, what Colorado insurance carriers are most popular, and how Colorado businesses are using the ICHRA.

Why Colorado's individual health insurance market is prime for ICHRAs 

ICHRAs work best in markets that have ample carrier competition, low individual health insurance pricing, plenty of brand name carriers, and lots of options. Colorado's individual health insurance market checks all the boxes. A whopping 210 plans are available for employees to choose from!

There are more ICHRAs per capita among our clients in Colorado than any other state in the country. 

With an abundance of quality health insurance plans for employees to choose from throughout the state, Colorado employees are positioned for success in terms of satisfaction with their ICHRA. With a state-level public option on the horizon, that will bring another option to choose from for employees offered an ICHRA in Colorado. ICHRAs and the public option are both expanding coverage for Colorado workers.

The lineup: Colorado's most popular individual health insurance carriers to use with ICHRA

In total, there are seven carriers that offer individual health plans in Colorado. In order of popularity among our clients' employees, the health carrier options in Colorado include: 

  1. Bright Health Plan
  2. Oscar
  3. Cigna
  4. Anthem
  5. Friday Health Plans
  6. Kaiser Permanente
  7. Rocky Mountain Health Plans

How much are business owners in Colorado reimbursing through their ICHRAs?

Statewide, Colorado employers reimbursed on average $371.59 per month per employee, which more than covers the lowest cost bronze plan (coming in at $282.65), and the lowest cost silver plan ($313.94). For larger companies (50-350), the average reimbursement is slightly higher, at $506.13. 

What types of companies are offering ICHRAs in Colorado? 

There is a broad sweep of companies opting for ICHRA in Colorado. 

  • Association / non-profit / church: 19%
  • healthcare provider / healthcare services: 14%
  • other: 14%
  • Construction/architecture/landscaping : 9%
  • financial: 6%
  • blue collar: 6%
  • professional services: 5%
  • tech: 5%
  • real estate: 4%
  • consulting: 3%
  • retail: 3%
  • CPA / bookkeeping / payroll: 3%
  • household: 3%
  • industrial / manufacturing / engineering: 2%
  • insurance: 2%
  • sports: 2%
  • legal: 1%
  • media / entertainment: 1%

While ICHRA proves to be a very effective strategy for health insurance for small businesses, we're seeing steady growth in the 50-350 employee size range in addition to smaller employers. 

Looking to set up an ICHRA in Colorado?

Chat with our team or talk to your broker to determine if an ICHRA is right for your company. You can also breeze through our ICHRA FAQs if you want to learn more! We are here to help answer any questions along the way. 

 

Picture of Amy

Hi, I'm Amy! I wrote this blog because I care about ideas (big and little) that can help fix our healthcare system. I used to work on projects for Kaiser Permanente and the Parkland Health & Hospital System so I've seen the system inside and out. It's so important that consumers keep up with industry shifts and changing health insurance regulations. I'm also Take Command Health's Content Editor and a busy mom. Learn more about me and connect with me on our about us page. Thanks!