HHS Says Trustmark’s Planned Insurance Rate Hikes Are ‘Unreasonable’
The insurance company, whose proposed increases would have taken place in five states, has a very different view of the situation.
The Hill: HHS Deems Insurance Rate Hikes 'Unreasonable' In 5 States
The Obama administration said Thursday that increases in healthcare premiums in five states are "unreasonable." The Health and Human Services Department said Trustmark Life Insurance Co. is pursuing unnecessary rate hikes in five states. The new healthcare law allows HHS to review rates and classify them as unreasonable, but the department cannot stop the rates from taking effect (Baker, 1/12).
Kaiser Health News Capsules blog: HHS Calls Trustmark's Rate Increases 'Unreasonable'; Insurer Begs To Differ
[The company] proposed health insurance premium hikes of 13 percent for 10,000 residents in five states: Arizona, Alabama, Pennsylvania, Virginia and Wyoming, according to HHS. When combined with other rate hikes made over the last year, premiums for small businesses in Alabama and Arizona, had increased by 27.2 percent and 18.1 percent, respectively (Carey, 1/12).
The New York Times: U.S. Seeks Rollback Of A Health Insurer's 'Excessive' Rate Increase
The action fits in with White House efforts to demonstrate the value of the new health care law and to portray President Obama as fighting for the economic interests of middle-class families in this election year. Cindy Gallaher, a spokeswoman for Trustmark, based in Lake Forest, Ill., said: ... "Our premiums are driven by the rising cost and increased utilization of medical services" (Pear, 1/12).