We recently got a call from a client who mentioned that he had done a Google search for the “best health insurance companies in Colorado” and his concern was that Anthem Blue Cross Blue Shield was not on the top ten list that he said came up as the first search result. We were a… Read more about Best Health Insurance Companies In Colorado
Colorado Division of Insurance
[…] One of the comments on the post was from Dede de Percin, the Executive Director of the Colorado Consumer Health Initiative (CCHI). […] Dede’s comment on my article referenced the point I made about consumers not having to pay additional fees to have a broker. Basically, health insurance is priced the same whether you go directly through a health insurance carrier (calling Anthem Blue Cross Blue Shield directly, for example) or through a broker (who will compare options from multiple carriers for you). Dede made this point:
“While a consumer or business doesn’t not pay a health insurance broker directly, broker fees and commissions are paid by the insurance companies – and rolled into […]”
[…] These numbers are much more in line with the rise in health insurance premiums that we’ve seen over the past few years. I have no explanation for why the data from the two sources is so dramatically different in terms of medical trend in 2010, but if the trend was really closer to 7.5% rather than 1.7%, the health insurance premium increases would be a lot easier to understand. […] In addition to the MLR rules, some states (including Colorado) have implemented strict review processes for rate hikes. The ACA now calls for insurers who propose a rate hike of 10% or more […]
[…] So he applied for an individual policy with Anthem Blue Cross for his family, and was approved. But then when he tried to cancel his mini-med plan, his employer told him that he couldn’t cancel it until the open enrollment period next April. It would seem that trapping enrollees into a year-long contract with a mini-med plan is not in line with the spirit of the HHS guidelines that call for full disclosure regarding the waivers and directives to steer enrollees towards healthcare dot gov if they are interested in getting a policy that does comply with the ACA rules regarding annual policy limits. […]
[…] This should help boost public participation in the rate review discussion, and add to the general understanding of how the rate review process works. The DOI is obviously working hard to create as much transparency as possible with regards to rate increases. Rates will continue to increase as long as the cost of health care continues to climb (and as long as we continue to increase our utilization of health care) but at least the logic behind the rate increases will be more clear.
The Colorado Health Plan Description Form isn’t exactly the same as the forms that HHS will require carriers to make available next year, but it’s similar in many ways, and carriers in Colorado have been issuing these standardized plan summaries for nearly 14 years. As well as outlining the coverage provided, the new forms will include “coverage examples” that will show potential customers how the plan would cover three common medical scenarios: breast cancer, maternity care, and diabetes. […]
For parents looking for child-only policies in Colorado, we are in the middle of the 2011 open enrollment period, which will end August 31st. All carriers that offer individual health insurance policies for adults must also offer (during open enrollment periods only) at least one plan option for a child applying without an adult on the policy. This is pursuant to Colorado Senate Bill 128, which was signed into law earlier this year. Following the passage of SB128, the Colorado Division of Insurance stepped in to clarify the issue with emergency regulation E-11-03, which has specific details about the implementation of the law. […]
[…] Because of the new law, employers can now use wage adjustments to reimburse employees for individual policies (as long as they haven’t had a group policy in the past twelve months), which wasn’t allowed at all in the past. But the use of HRAs to fund individual policies can now only be done if the employer hasn’t had a group policy in the past twelve months, and that restriction wasn’t found in the DOI final agency order regarding HRAs. […]
[…] If the rates are justified, they’ll likely be approved – even if the amount of the increase is distastefully large. The DOI is not trying to keep premiums artificially low or force carriers to cut out legitimate claims expenses. Having rates approved by the DOI does not mean that the people of Colorado get smaller-than-average premium increases. Rather, it means that although our rate increases are sometimes substantial, we know that those rates are justified as a reflection of increasing claims costs.
[…] Senate Bill 200 (the Colorado Health Benefit Exchange Act), co-sponsored by Senator Betty Boyd (D – Lakewood) gets the ball rolling on the health insurance exchange that the state will have to have in place by 2014. Specifically, the bill would create a “nonprofit unincorporated public entity known as the Health Benefit Exchange”. It includes guidelines for the appointment of a 12-member board of directors (9 of whom will be voting members) who will oversee the exchange, and lays out their responsibilities. […]
[…] You can still get quotes for child-only plans, but the only options that will appear on quote engines that work with major health insurance carriers are Rocky Mountain Health Plans, and Kaiser Permanente for people in the Denver/Boulder area. We wanted to clarify this point in case there is confusion surrounding the open enrollment period. It’s unknown whether the other major carriers will be able to find a way to make child-only coverage a profitable venture as time goes by, but for now, the options are still quite limited in the child-only market in Colorado, regardless of the open enrollment window.
The 2011 Colorado legislative session is now underway, and Senate Bill 19 will be particularly interesting to watch. Since 1994, Colorado has had a law that bans employers from reimbursing employees for individual health insurance premiums. If any portion of the premiums for such plans are paid or reimbursed by the employer, the Colorado Division of Insurance considers the employer to have created a small group health insurance plan, and the plan must adhere to small group regulations (this impacts things like underwriting, and also has tax implications for the employer). […]
The Colorado Division of Insurance issued a press release on Monday, addressing the fact that health insurance premiums in Colorado are continuing to increase. They reiterated some numbers from earlier this fall, noting that less than 5% of the overall rate increases for next year can be attributed to changes implemented by federal health care reform. The vast majority of the rate hikes that insureds will see in 2011 are due to factors that have been driving health insurance premiums for years, long before federal reform became an issue. As long as the cost of health care continues to rise, the cost of health insurance will rise along with it. […]
For nearly two decades, Cover Colorado has been providing health insurance to people in Colorado who don’t have access to group health insurance coverage and have pre-existing conditions the make them uninsurable (or unable to get coverage without exclusion riders or rate increases that put their premium above that offered by Cover Colorado) in the individual health insurance market. While we’re lucky to have such a resource, it doesn’t come cheap […]
Although the increases we’ve seen this year are similar to what we’ve seen over the last several years, there have been more questions since the PPACA was signed into law in March about whether federal health care reform is the driving factor for this year’s increases. To clarify, the Colorado Division of Insurance has released a statement noting that federal health reform is responsible for less than 5% of the total health insurance premium increase in Colorado this year. […]
A west coast legal firm has launched an investigation into the market conduct of Mega Life and Health Insurance Company and Mid-West National Life Insurance Company. Their parent company, HealthMarkets, Inc., is also being investigated, along with the two shareholders (Blackstone Group, L.P. and Goldman Sachs Group, Inc.) who purchased HealthMarkets in 2006 for $850 million. […]
Last month, the Colorado Division of Insurance released a report on health insurance in the state, and it is definitely be a good read for anyone interested in how health insurance works in Colorado. There are all sorts of interesting facts included. For example, only a third of Coloradans are covered by a health insurance policy that is regulated by the Division of Insurance. The rest are either covered by a self-insured employer plan or a government plan, or are uninsured. […]
The Colorado House of Representatives rejected a proposal yesterday that would have made it possible for Colorado residents to buy health insurance from out-of-state carriers not licensed in Colorado. The vote was close, but failed 6-5 in the committee meeting. I think that the state-by-state system of health insurance in this country is ridiculous, considering… Read more about No Out Of State Health Insurance For Colorado Residents