Thursday, December 23, 2010

Great quotes II

"For the first time, there are rules to hold the insurance companies accountable for huge rate hikes by shining light on the financial data they claim justifies double-digit rate increases year after year. The days of insurance companies running roughshod over consumers and jacking up our rates whenever they want are over. The new rate review rules represent a key step toward finally ending the insurance companies’ stranglehold on our health care." - Ethan Rome, executive director of Health Care for America Now, in a statement Tuesday after HHS issued rules on health insurance rate hikes....

Eh? From this quote one wouldn't know that in most states insurance companies already have to get their rate increases approved by the state insurance commissioners... and that this remains the case under the HHS rules issued...

A more measured (and accurate) quote on the changes:

“Consumers across the country have struggled to keep up with health insurance rate increases that have piled up year after year—especially for those who work for small businesses or have to buy their own coverage. Until now, states have been responsible for overseeing health insurance rate increases, but many states don’t go far enough to protect consumers from unjustified rates. Under these proposed rules, insurance companies will have to explain why they are seeking a large rate hike. This should be a help for consumers in two ways. First, it provides a strong incentive for insurers to do a thorough review of their justifications before asking for big rate increases. And second, it will help consumers better understand why their rates are going up and they can decide to look for better plans.” - DeAnn Friedholm, the director of Consumers Union’s health reform campaign.

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