Anthem Postpones Health Insurance Rate Hike until May 2010
Anthem Blue Cross of California announced today that it would postpone any health insurance plan increases until May 1, 2010. Anthem parent company Wellpoint maintained that the controversial price increases were A>?,?_"actuarially sound and in full compliance with all requirements in the law.A>?,?A_
The announcement came shortly after a volley of criticism in recent weeks from everyone from state legislators to the President of the United States that the rate action was unfair. Visit our last blog entry for sound bites from everyone from Feinstein to Obama about the Anthem rate hike.
The average health insurance premium increase according to Anthem is about 25% . The company claims that less than one fourth of members should see increases of 35% to 39%, the company said. They also pointed out that some policyholders will see their rates go down.
California State Insurance Commissioner Steve Poizner has been working with Anthem to delay the rate hike so he could have a third party review the rates and see if they are fair. “Should they find that these rate increases were unwarranted,A>?,?A_ he stated. A>?,?_"I will immediately take action to get Anthem Blue Cross to follow the law and lower their rates.”
WellPoint executive Brian Sassi, responded, “Anthem filed these rates with the appropriate regulators in November of 2009,” he said. “They are actuarially sound and in full compliance with all requirements in the law.A>?,?A_