Minnesota making significant progress on its health insurance exchange

Minnesota health insurance moves ahead with exchange system. Minnesota is making significant progress on establishing its health insurance exchange system. The state has determined that it will continue building an exchange despite the uncertain future of the Affordable Care Act. The federal health care law requires each state to build its own exchange by 2014 or risk losing control of the exchange effort to the federal government. Though the state is committed to building an exchange, the burden of the process falls on the Minnesota Department of Commerce instead of…

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Treasury Department investigates in...
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Medical loss ratio provision could have saved Illinois residents millions according to Commonwealth Fund report

Health care reform medical loss ratio study The Commonwealth Fund, an independent foundation based in New York that researchers health care policies, has released a new report concerning the medical loss ratio (MLR) provision of the Affordable Care Act. The MLR provision requires insurance companies to spend no less than 80% of the money they collect from premiums on improving medical care. If insurers cannot meet this standard, the money must be returned to policyholders. The provision took effect in 2011, but has been mired in litigation and bureaucracy, which…

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Consumer Watchdog proposes new ballot initiative to curb health insurance rate hikes

California health insurance industry being eyeballed Consumer Watchdog, a non-profit advocacy group focused on the insurance industry, has proposed a new ballot initiative to the California Legislature that would put a stop on rising health insurance premiums. The organization claims that the state’s largest insurance companies have increased premiums by 20% since April 1, 2012. Consumer Watchdog suggests that these companies will raise rates a second time in May, and increase that will likely be 20% again. These higher rates have affected more than 1 million Californians, many of whom…

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Xavier University decides to cut contraceptive coverage for employees

The Xavier University of Ohio will be making cuts to the insurance it offers employees in July of this year. The university, which is one of the oldest Catholic colleges in the country, will stop providing coverage for birth control, railing against rules imposed by the federal government requiring all faith-based organizations to provide such coverage to their employees. The university’s decision has struck a chord with the Obama administration, which is now accusing the college of standing in the way of a regulation that would be beneficial to women’s…

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Increase in visits to emergency rooms causes health insurance changes

A new study has indicated that Americans who have either gained new health insurance or who have lost their coverage make more emergency room visits than people who have had a continuous insured or uninsured status. The results of the study are causing some concern, as the healthcare overhaul will be requiring an additional 32 million Americans to become newly insured by 2014. At the same time, the study findings have also indicated that the number of trips to the emergency room do tend to even out when a person’s…

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Results of 2012 National Critical Illness Insurance Buyer published

The American Association for Critical Illness Insurance, in association with General Re Life Corporation, has released a report based on the results of the 2012 National Critical Illness Insurance Buyer Study. The study showed that there is a growing number of people purchasing critical illness insurance in the demographic of those between the ages of 25 and 45. They are buying the coverage in order to ensure that they will have immediate cash payments available to them should they ever receive a diagnosis of a serious health condition. Approximately 49…

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Consumer Watchdog Campaign opposes Anthem Blue Cross insurance rate increases in California

Anthem Blue Cross has announced that they will be increasing insurance rates by as much as 20 percent for the health coverage paid for by almost 600,000 people in California by May 1, 2012. Consumer Watchdog Campaign released a statement that said that a ballot initiative for boosting the affordability of health insurance through the regulation of hikes in premiums is vital to protecting people in California from excessive increases. This ballot initiative would require insurers to provide a public justification of changes that they make to their rates, under…

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