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News Story
4/22/2011
Posted by Mark Reback
Something got lost in the flap about big rate increases for individual health insurance: Some policyholders got a worse deal than others, depending on which state regulator oversees the policy. A review by the state Department of Managed Care found that 121,000 people whose Anthem Blue Cross insurance policies it regulates are facing a rate...
Blog Post
4/9/2011
Posted by Jamie Court
This week we launched our campaign in Sacramento for our top priorities: 1) giving you power to stop unwanted collection of your personal information online and 2) an end to excessive health insurance premium hikes. No one at Consumer Watchdog's offices yesterday could doubt the need for better regulation of health insurance premiums....
News Story
4/8/2011
Posted by Mark Reback
Oversight of Anthem Blue Cross individual plans is split between two health insurance regulators. One group is getting a break on cost increases. The other is not. Nearly 151,000 Anthem Blue Cross individual policyholders face rate hikes of as much as 26% on May 1, even though far more Anthem individual customers are getting a break this year...
News Release
4/8/2011
Posted by Doug Heller
Santa Monica, CA -- Consumer Watchdog, in a letter to Governor Jerry Brown, warned that in less than a month more than 150,000 Californians will face a major Anthem Blue Cross rate hike and increased deductibles, despite a flurry of reports last month that there would be a reprieve.  The 150,000 Californians scheduled to receive a May 1...
News Story
3/22/2011
Posted by Mark Reback
Anthem Blue Cross will lower its rate hikes planned for July and will hold off on increases to co-payments and deductibles until 2012, according to an agreement announced Monday by the state Department of Insurance. "This is good news for 600,000 policyholders," State Insurance Commissioner Dave Jones said Monday, adding that the...
News Release
3/21/2011
Posted by Doug Heller
Santa Monica, CA – Executives with Anthem Blue Cross have announced that the 16.4% rate hike previously scheduled to hit 600,000 Californians on June 1, 2011 will be reduced to an average 9.1% rate hike taking effect, instead, on July 1. Last week, Blue Shield of California rescinded a proposed 6.5% rate hike that, in conjunction with...
News Story
3/21/2011
Posted by Mark Reback
LOS ANGELES, CA — Anthem Blue Cross, the largest health plan in California, said Monday it will delay and reduce rate hikes that would have hit some 600,000 policyholders at an estimated cost of $40 million. Anthem is one of four major health insurers in the state who earlier agreed to put off premium increases for at least 60 days at...
News Story
3/19/2011
Posted by Mark Reback
When health insurers notify members that rates are going up - often in the punishing double-digits - they typically blame rising medical costs. They say the problem really isn't theirs; it's all the other pieces of the health-care puzzle that drive up costs that must be passed on to customers. This triggers a backlash of frustration...
News Story
3/11/2011
Posted by Mark Reback
You soon may not be able to judge your cost for healthcare by the name on the PPO insurance plan. For example, the PPO Share 500 plan will have a $550 deductible. State regulators are looking into it. If you bought a Quarter Pounder at McDonald's, you'd expect it to contain at least four ounces of meat. If you bought a 32-ounce Big...
Legal Update
3/10/2011
Posted by Jerry Flanagan
David Lazarus' column in the Los Angeles Times (see below) reports that on May 1st, Blue Cross will dramatically increase the annual deductibles on individual health insurance policies, increase premiums, and make other changes to benefits like increasing co-pays. If Blue Cross is allowed to get away with making sweeping changes to our...