State Rejects Health Insurance Rate Increases, Insurer Agrees To Take Less

David Mannis (802)-828-4872
Tue, 05/24/2011

Rejecting rate increases initially sought by health insurer MVP after Departmental review, Commissioner Steve Kimbell approved new rates but only after sending MVP back to sharpen their pencils and reduce their initial request.

Kimbell said “MVP’s initial rate filings reflected—inappropriately, we believe—the inherent uncertainty of reliance on high-deductible health care plans. MVP apparently misunderstood the impact of moving so aggressively toward these unpredictable product designs. Vermont Business and individuals are not going to bear the full cost of this miscalculation.”

MVP had submitted significant rate increases for network-based insurance products, citing unforeseen performance results from new high-deductible products.

A high-deductible plan requires an insured person to pay a larger amount of his or her own money for care before insurance pays any part of medical bills. The new rates go into effect July 1, 2011.

In recent years Vermont health insurance carriers have asked for large rate increases for individuals and small employer groups. “This is a trend that has to be fought, not just by the Department but by insurers and providers if we are to have any hope of success in our efforts to achieve real health care reform in Vermont,” Kimbell said.

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