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By Richard Asinof
PROVIDENCE – Two reports released today by R.I. Health Insurance Commissioner Christopher F. Koller provide insight into market trends covering Rhode Island’s commercial health insurers.
The first report benchmarked Rhode Island’s two largest health insurers - Blue Cross & Blue Shield of Rhode Island and UnitedHealthcare of New England - “domiciled” in the state. The report looked at the metrics for administrative spending, medical trends and surplus and compared them to other New England states, using data from 2007 through 2011.
It was conducted by the Wakely Consulting Group and had been submitted six months earlier, on July 19. No specific reason was given by OHIC why the report was being released now, but it follows Blue Cross’s recent request on Dec. 7 for an increase in its 2013 rates, based on increases in utilization trends in 2012.
Blue Cross is seeking a 9.1 percent average rate increase for large group employers, 5.12 percentage points higher than the 3.98 percent increase granted by Koller in September, and a 5.1 percent average rate increases for small group employers, 3.45 percentage points higher than the 1.65 average percent rate increase approved by Koller in September.
The Wakely report had been used as key part of the basis decision-making on premium rate increases requested by the insurers in 2012, according to OHIC.
Among the findings highlighted by OHIC in the Wakely report were:
To view the entire report, visit www.ohic.ri.gov.
The second report looked at enrollment trends through June 2012 of the three commercial insurers in Rhode Island – Blue Cross, UnitedHealthcare and Tufts Health Plan, reflecting membership patterns across markets, companies, and employer size.
The key trends identified by OHIC included:
To view the second report, visit: www.ohic.ri.gov.