Anthem, ConnectiCare, Golden Rule Plan to Increase Health Insurance Rates in CT
At the end of July, the Connecticut Mirror reported on a Connecticut Insurance Department public hearing, where customers may voice their opinions about rate increases.
For some background, when insurance companies in Connecticut decide to bump up premiums, the state can reject the increase for three possible reasons: if it’s not sufficient, if it appears excessive, or if it clearly discriminates against a demographic. As well, customers with such policies can attempt to influence the state regulator to decline the changes.
One approach for the latter is holding a public hearing. Since 2011, when the governor vetoed a bill that would have made public gatherings easier to organize, the state Insurance Commissioner has had the power to schedule a hearing if plans have a 15-percent or greater increase.
In the present, three insurance carriers have rate increases planned for Connecticut residents. According to the Mirror’s report:
• Anthem: An average of 4.7 percent for 55,000 people.
• ConnectiCare: 9.8 percent for 34,400 people.
• Golden Rule: 18.5 percent for 3,414 people.
Residents have had the option to take out these policies through Access Health CT, the state’s individual insurance market, and outside exchanges.
In response to these rate hikes, Insurance Commissioner Katherine L. Wade requested a public hearing for July 27th, where state residents could comment for three minutes or submit written statements to the state insurance department beforehand. Based upon the event’s coverage, policyholders allege these three carriers do not provide improved service for higher premiums, and that they cannot afford the greater costs.
As well, Wade planned the meeting to keep those in the state better-informed about health insurance. “I believe it is very important that consumers better understand the regulatory review process and the factors that drive health care costs that ultimately have an effect on their household budgets,” she told the press. “The Department’s actuarial review is rigorous and seeks to ensure that rates are adequate for the benefits offered and protects consumers’ interests.”
The above increases, averaging about 10 percent for this group, are not set in stone yet.
If your premiums have significantly gone up, it may be time to shop around for a new health insurance policy. When the time comes, work with an independent agent like Ion Insurance to find a better financial fit.