Why are health insurance rates are going up

Anthem Blue Cross Blue Shield headquarters (file).
Anthem Blue Cross Blue Shield headquarters (file).

HARTFORD, Conn. (WTNH) — The cost of more than 66,000 health insurance policies are at risk of going up. Anthem Blue Cross Blue Shield wants to hike some premiums up to 17-percent.

A public hearing is scheduled for this morning in Hartford, and health care advocates say they want to know how insurance companies are calculating their rate increases for the fall of 2015.

Insurance companies in Connecticut had to submit their proposed rate increases to the Connecticut Department of Insurance by the end of may. Those proposals were made public earlier this month.

Members of a community-based organization called CONECT are calling this public hearing to see how insurance companies like Anthem Blue Cross Blue Shield, ConnectiCare and United Healthcare came up with these rate increases, which range from 7 percent upwards of 12 and even 17 percent for some people. The proposed increase amount varies depending on the insurance provider.

Those insurance companies attribute these increases to federal mandates from the Affordable Care Act as well as the rising cost in medical services and increased demand.

But CONECT says it wants to see data that reflects all of this and these proposed rate hikes.

These rate hikes are only proposed. They still have to be approved by the Department of Insurance. The public hearing on the matter starts at 9 a.m. at the Department of Insurance’s office on Market Street in Hartford.

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