Study: BlueCross could be doing more to keep rates down - | Chattanooga News, Weather & Sports

Study: BlueCross could be doing more to keep rates down

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CHATTANOOGA (Times Free Press) - Tennessee's biggest health insurer could use its growing surplus to lower its health care premiums, a new study from Consumers Union suggests.

BlueCross BlueShield of Tennessee and other plans from nonprofit Blues have nearly doubled their reserves over the past decade while continuing to raise premiums at more than twice the rate of inflation, the study says.

"These Blue plans hit consumers with big premium hikes while they've built up enormous surpluses," said Sondra Roberto, a staff attorney for Consumers Union who wrote the study for Consumer Reports magazine. "Insurance premiums shouldn't keep going up year after year when insurers are hoarding such huge surpluses.

"These rate hikes could have been reduced or avoided if companies applied just a portion of their surplus to rate stability, while leaving sufficient funds for solvency protection."

Working Together for You: Read more in the Chattanooga Times Free Press.

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