State's Superintendent of Insurance Re-Gains Authority to Approve or Disapprove Insurance Rate Increases, Yielding Enormous Savings to Employers and Employees
Governor Cuomo announced today that the Department of Financial Services (DFS) has stepped in to help control skyrocketing health insurance premiums for New Yorkers....
Bill Harrington, current chair, Westchester County Association led WCA's Blue Ribbon Task Force on Healthcare Reform during years of successful lobbying efforts.
The Governor says the state has saved employers and employees more than $500 million alike in additional premium increases for 2013.
Amy Allen, managing director, Advocacy and International Trade for the Westchester County Association says that starting in 2008, WCA's Blue Ribbon Task Force on Healthcare Reform repeatedly lobbied the state to reinstate a little-known rule that gives the Superintendent of Insurance authority to approve rate increases.
"It's a good tool to keep insurance premiums in check," notes Allen who also says the New York State law is a meaningful stopgap in protecting business and consumers from sharp rate increases in advance of the Federal Affordable Care Act. New York State also requires insurers to spend 82 cents of every premium dollar on actual health care services.
According the the Westchester County Business Journal: "Health insurers requested rate increases on average of 12.4 percent, but the DFS cut the average increase to 7.5 percent...Rates for small groups will increase 9.59 percent, as opposed to the 15.77 health insurers proposed. This will impact 1.2 million people."
Wondering what your insurance company was looking for in their 2013 rate increases?