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News Release
5/26/2011
CONTACT Doug Heller
Santa Monica, CA – The CEO of the nonprofit health insurance company Blue Shield of California, Bruce Bodaken, earned $4.6 million in 2010, according to documents made public by the California Department of Insurance Wednesday.  Blue Shield paid its top ten executives more than $14 million combined last year. In January of this year,...
News Release
5/19/2011
CONTACT Carmen Balber
Washington, DC – Final health reform regulations issued today by the Obama administration fail to require health insurance companies to make enough information public to prevent unreasonable rate increases, said Consumer Watchdog.   The regulation issued by HHS requires review of any health insurance rate increase of 10% or greater...
Blog Post
5/12/2011
By Carmen Balber
Health insurance premiums are increasing at a rate faster than medical inflation, especially in the volatile individual and small group markets, and worker incomes have not kept pace. The passage of the federal reform law triggered further outsized increases by insurance companies apparently seeking to establish high base rates in advance of the...
Blog Post
5/11/2011
By Judy Dugan
Washington D.C. -- It's hard to imagine that a briefing on rate regulation and a new Consumer Watchdog report would draw a fascinated audience, but this is DC.  Journalists and nonprofit advocates spent 90 minutes Wednesday as Sen. Dianne Feinstein and an expert panel made an impassioned call for getting health insurance companies under...
News Release
5/11/2011
CONTACT Carmen Balber & Judy Dugan
Washington, DC— U.S. Senator Dianne Feinstein, Representative Jan Schakowsky, and Maine Superintendent of Insurance Mila Kofman said strong regulation is necessary to prevent excessive rate hikes and hold down costs under federal health reform. They appeared at a Consumer Watchdog briefing on Capitol Hill today. The nonprofit consumer...
News Release
4/29/2011
CONTACT Doug Heller
 Santa Monica, CA – The California Department of Managed Health Care (DMHC) declared Anthem Blue Cross’s impending May 1 rate hike “unreasonable” for at least 120,000 Californians, but acknowledged that state law provides the agency no power “but to publicly express our disappointment that Anthem Blue Cross...
News Release
4/27/2011
CONTACT Doug Heller
Santa Monica, CA – Insurance giant Wellpoint, parent company of California's Anthem Blue Cross, announced today that its first quarter profits rose 6% this year to nearly $1 billion for the first three months of 2011. At the same time, consumer advocates are pressing for reforms that would limit health insurance rate increases in the...
Blog Post
4/26/2011
By Judy Dugan
What are the lobbyists for the California health insurance industry smoking? At a legislative hearing today on allowing the state insurance commissioner to review and approve or modify health premium increases, the California Health Insurance Plans lobbyist said patients in California don't need that, because "California is a success...
News Release
4/26/2011
CONTACT Carmen Balber & Judy Dugan
Washington, DC – The Maine Supreme Court upheld a decision by the state superintendent of insurance to reduce an excessive health insurance rate increase proposed by Anthem, in a decision issued Thursday. Consumer Watchdog said the victory for Maine consumers showed the need for effective rate regulation in every state to ensure that...
News Release
4/14/2011
CONTACT Carmen Balber & Judy Dugan
Washington, DC – Insurance salespeople are on Capitol Hill today lobbying Congress to support a bill that would gut federal health reform cost-saving rules and increase consumer health insurance premiums to protect brokers’ sales commissions. The top three lobby associations representing insurance agents and brokers gave members of...