Insurers Plan to Post Double-Digit Premium Hikes in 2016

Insurance companies are proposing a double-digit rate hike in 2016, with Blue Cross Blue Shield seeking a premium increase of 20% or more in several states.

Citing unexpected healthcare costs in 2015, several insurance companies are proposing a double-digit rate hike in 2016, with Blue Cross Blue Shield seeking a premium increase of 20% or more in several states. The Affordable Care Act and expensive specialty medications that have recently entered the market are 2 of several reasons for this proposed hike, according to insurance companies. The steep increase in premium would affect plans sold on the state-run health insurance exchanges as well as individual coverage sold through brokers and agents. State health regulators can reject the steep rises or can pressure insurance companies to reduce the rate of increase.

Some insurers may be seeking what seems like a sizeable rate increase because they charged much less than the competition for this year, according to Catherine Murphy-Barron, vice president of health with the American Academy of Actuaries.

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