ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) — Gov. Larry Hogan has announced lower health insurance premiums for individual plans on Maryland’s health care exchange.

Hogan and the state’s health insurance commissioner announced approval of the new rates on Friday.

They say next year’s rates are down an average of 13.2 percent.

The lower rates are the result of the state’s reinsurance program. The initiative was the result of bipartisan support from the Republican governor and the Democrat-controlled General Assembly. Maryland’s individual market was in danger of collapsing without it.

Reinsurance provides a safety net for insurers by helping to pay large claims. Before it was approved, insurers had requested an average rate increase of 30.2 percent. The Hogan administration says rate increase requests ranged from 91.4 percent to 18.5 percent across carriers.

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