|For Immediate Release
June 6, 2014
|For Information, Contact:
Vivian D. Laxton, 410-468-2007
Public Comment Sought
on Carriers' Proposed Health Rates for 2015
(June 6, 2014) - Today, the Maryland Insurance Administration (MIA) posted on its website for public comment health insurance carriers’ rate requests for plans to be sold in Maryland’s individual and small group markets for 2015. The filings include the addition of two carriers to the individual market. Rate filing documents can be found at www.healthrates.mdinsurance.state.md.us. These rate filings do not affect health insurance plans that provide coverage for most Marylanders, such as those offered by large employers or employers who self-insure; "grandfathered" plans purchased before March 2010; or Federal plans, such as Medicare, Tricare and federal employee plans.
“The rates posted today are proposed, not approved,” said Maryland Insurance Commissioner Therese M. Goldsmith. “We will conduct a thorough review and may require changes to the rates before they are approved.”
In Maryland, only those rates approved by the Insurance Commissioner may be charged to policyholders. The Commissioner must disapprove or modify any premium rate filing where, based on statistical analysis and reasonable assumptions, the proposed rates appear to be inadequate, excessive in relationship to the benefits offered, or unfairly discriminatory.
All companies selling individual and small group plans this year have filed to participate in those markets again next year. A new entrant − Cigna Health and Life Insurance Co. – also is seeking MIA approval for plans to be sold in the individual market through Maryland’s Health Benefit Exchange, known as Maryland Health Connection, and in the individual market outside of the Exchange. In addition, UnitedHealthcare of the Mid-Atlantic Inc., which is participating in the small group market this year, is looking to expand its offerings to include individual plans in 2015.
Carriers in the individual market this year have proposed the following changes to their rates, on average, for 2015:
- Kaiser Foundation Health Plan of the Mid-Atlantic States – a 12.1 percent reduction;
- Evergreen Health Cooperative – a 10.3 percent reduction;
- All Savers Insurance (a UnitedHealthcare company) – a 4.8 percent increase;
- CareFirst BlueChoice Inc. – a 22.8 percent increase;
- CareFirst of Maryland Inc. and Group Hospitalization and Medical Services Inc. (CareFirst companies) – a 30.2 percent increase.
Carriers selling small employer plans this year have proposed the following changes to their rates, on average, for 2015:
- MAMSI Life and Health Insurance Co., Optimum Choice, UnitedHealthcare Insurance Co., and UnitedHealthcare of the Mid-Atlantic (UnitedHealthcare companies) – 2.6 percent reductions;
- Aetna Health Insurance Inc. – a 0.5 percent reduction;
- Aetna Life Insurance Inc. – a 0.1 percent reduction;
- Evergreen Health Cooperative – no change;
- CareFirst BlueChoice Inc. – a 5.7 percent increase;
- CareFirst of Maryland Inc. and Group Hospitalization and Medical Services Inc. (CareFirst companies) – 6.7 percent increases;
- Kaiser Foundation Health Plan of the Mid-Atlantic States – a 6.9 percent increase;
- Coventry Health Care of Delaware Inc. (an Aetna company) – a 13.3 percent increase; and
- Coventry Health and Life Insurance Co. (an Aetna company) – a 19.0 percent increase.
The MIA expects to issue decisions about rates for 2015 individual and small group products in late summer.
About the Maryland Insurance Administration
The Maryland Insurance Administration (MIA) is an independent State agency charged with regulating Maryland’s $26 billion insurance industry. For more information about the MIA, please visit www.mdinsurance.state.md.us or follow us on Facebook at www.facebook.com/MDInsuranceAdmin or Twitter at @MD_Insurance.
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