Rate Review Works: Kaiser Permanente Rolls Back Premium Rate Increase

Health insurer Kaiser Permanente retroactively rolled back premium rate increases on small businesses in California by 1.2 percent. The action comes after a new state law empowered the Department of Managed Health Care (DMHC) to review the actuarial data behind the proposed rate increases. DMHC expressed concern over the data behind the insurers’ initial 10.7 percent increase and requested a reduction. Kaiser relented and lowered the increase to 9.5 percent, for total savings of $13.5 million. The new lowered rate will help 190,000 enrollees, the agency estiamtes. A similar rate review provision in the Affordable Care Act went into effect on Sept. 1. On Friday, HHS unveiled a new web-based tool that allows insurance customers “to find out when health plans are considering steep premium hike.”

Karl Singer