New York regulators on Wednesday approved a slate of health insurance rate increases for next year, covering individual market and small group plans in the state.
In most instances, the Department of Financial Services approved far smaller rate increases than had been sought by health insurance companies.
Officials announced they had reduced individual market rate hikes by 48%; for small group market plans officials reduced requested increases by 52%. The reductions are expected to save about $800 million in costs. Some companies initially sought rate increases of more than 40%, were significantly reduced.
The approved rate changes can be found here.
Nevertheless, many companies are hiking rates for next year.
“Rising medical costs and inflation continue to put upward pressure on premiums,” said Financial Services Superintendent Adrienne Harris. “With our rate actions announced today, we continue to prioritize the financial wellbeing of consumers while ensuring that New Yorkers have access to a robust, stable health insurance market.”
Insurers, meanwhile, said the requested rate increased were rooted in the challenges of rising health care costs overall, including rising drug prices.
"While the final approved rates announced by the State today are significant, in some instances, DFS fails to fully account for the increasing cost and utilization of health care services," said New York State Conference of Blue Cross and Blue Shield Plans in a statement.