March 8, 2010
The News & Observer reports on huge rate increases hitting North Carolina families who have health care coverage through Blue Cross Blue Shield – almost everyone, given their practical monopoly:
“In this state, Blue Cross and Blue Shield of North Carolina, a nonprofit insurer that controls most of the state’s market for individual policies, is allowed to raise those rates an average of about 12 percent this year.”
The average isn’t the whole story. Some policy holders are seeing rates go up 50% or more, according to N&O reporter, Alan Wolf:
“David Swanson, a Durham investment adviser, received new rates for his teenagers. The monthly premium for his 15-year-old son increased about 11 percent to $185.15. The rate for his 17-year-old daughter jumped 54 percent, to $255.57.”
Employers are paying much more for coverage. Most of BCBSNC’s 3.7 million customers are enrolled through work, where some have been hit by double-digit premium hikes.
Read the whole story, Rising Blue Cross bills stun N.C. families, at the N&O web site.