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Blog Post
4/23/2012
Laurel Kaufer
My name is Laurel Kaufer and I’m a Consumer Watchdog member. I am also one of the one million Californians who will be hit with a health insurance rate hike on May 1st. Are you one of the May Million facing rate hikes of up to 20%? As a self-employed, single mom, I’ve struggled for more than a decade to balance the cost of health...
News Release
4/20/2012
CONTACT Carmen Balber & Jamie Court
Santa Monica -- UnitedHealth Group, which runs the fifth-largest health insurance company in California, reported $1.39 billion in profits in the first quarter of 2011, a 3% increase over last year, as it raises premiums on 84,000 Californians with small business coverage as much as 17% on May 1st. The insurance company is funding the fight...
News Release
4/19/2012
CONTACT Carmen Balber & Jamie Court
Santa Monica, CA – A new analysis at followthemoney.org finds that health insurance companies gave $11.6 million in campaign cash to California politicians, including $7.4 million to candidates for the California legislature, between 2000 and 2010. The largest health insurance donor in California over the last decade was...
News Release
4/5/2012
CONTACT Jamie Court
Santa Monica, CA – The California Department of Insurance has announced that Aetna is imposing an 8% annual health insurance rate hike on its small business customers despite state actuaries’ findings that the increase is “unreasonable” and not supported by data.  Consumer Watchdog Campaign says this demonstrates the...
News Release
4/4/2012
CONTACT Carmen Balber & Jamie Court
Santa Monica, CA -- Four of the largest health insurance companies in California have increased premiums for 1.1 million Californians and small business owners by as much as 20% on April and May 1st according to data filed with state regulators, said Consumer Watchdog Campaign today. The rate increases are the second or third for most...
News Release
3/22/2012
CONTACT Carmen Balber & Jamie Court
Santa Monica, CA – Anthem Blue Cross will raise health insurance rates for nearly 600,000 Californians by as much as 20% on May 1. A ballot initiative to make health insurance more affordable by regulating premium increases is necessary to protect Californians from excessive rate hikes, said Consumer Watchdog Campaign today. Friday is...
News Release
3/12/2012
CONTACT Carmen Balber & Jamie Court
Santa Monica – Health care generated $35.7 million in lobbyist spending in 2011, more than any other industry in California, and Kaiser was the largest spender at $3.5 million, according to a California Healthline analysis of state records released today. A ballot initiative proposed by consumer advocates would prohibit insurance companies...
News Release
3/8/2012
CONTACT Carmen Balber & Doug Heller
Santa Monica, CA --- The California Department of Insurance announced today that it has saved doctors, dentists and other medical providers $19 million on their medical malpractice insurance premiums, using the state’s prior approval rate regulation authority to reduce unjustified premiums. Yet a doctors’ group opposes the same...
News Release
3/7/2012
CONTACT Carmen Balber & Jamie Court
Santa Monica, CA -- The first large-scale survey of Americans about their problems with medical debt show 1 in 5 are burdened by medical debt and half of them are unable to pay the debt at all. Having health insurance is a key to being able to pay for medical care, said the Consumer Watchdog Campaign, but spiraling insurance rates have left...
News Release
2/29/2012
CONTACT Carmen Balber & Jamie Court
Santa Monica, CA – Blue Shield has $3.1 billion in excess surplus, 1400% more than the state requires, yet still plans to raise rates up to 14.8% for 320,000 California patients on March 1st. Repeated rate hikes in the face of massive company surpluses at the same time that inflation slows show the need for a ballot initiative to prevent...