Laura Colbert credits her two dogs, Mud and Ginger, with helping her maintain her own health and work-life balance in the face of numerous pressing priorities.
Last week, we sent an alert asking you to add your voice to our effort to ensure that exciting new health insurance standards that provide increased transparency and value for health care consumers, known as medical loss ratio rules, remain strong in Georgia. Your response was overwhelming!
Thanks to your strong support, Georgians for a Healthy Future and Georgia Watch are proud to announce that we jointly submitted public comments on behalf of 17 Georgia organizations to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) requesting that these new standards go through as planned. You can read our public comments here.
Under the new standards, beginning in 2012 Georgia consumers who purchase individual health insurance policies will have access to more information about how their premium dollars are being spent AND will be eligible for rebates if their insurance company fails to provide sufficient value for the premium dollar.
Consumers will receive rebates if their insurance company fails to spend at least 80 percent of collected premiums on medical care or quality improvement activities, as compared to profits, administration, and marketing. It is estimated that Georgia consumers will receive approximately $42 million in rebates over the next three years if the new standards go through as planned.?? We explain how these new standards work in our new issue brief, Medical Loss Ratios: Ensuring Value for Georgia’s Health Care Consumers, available here.
Our public comments were submitted in response to the Georgia Department of Insurance’s request to HHS for an adjustment to these new standards, which would effectively weaken them. If the adjustment is approved, the rebates to consumers would be substantially reduced and Georgia consumers would lose out on about $34 million in rebates they are currently slated to receive.
Thanks to your strong response, our public comments requesting that the standards go through will be considered by HHS as they weigh the adjustment request. A determination should be made within 30 days, and we will keep you updated as we learn more.?? Thank you for your continued advocacy on behalf of Georgia’s health care consumers!