warning Hi, we've moved to USCANNENBERGMEDIA.COM. Visit us there!

Neon Tommy - Annenberg digital news

Aetna, Anthem Blue Cross And PacifiCare Delay Rate Increases; Blue Shield Holds Out

Paresh Dave |
January 27, 2011 | 4:14 p.m. PST

Executive Producer

Three California health insurance companies agreed to delay rate increases for 60 days, scoring California Insurance Commissioner Dave Jones a partial victory.

"I am pleased that Aetna, Anthem Blue Cross and PacifiCare have agreed to my request that they halt the implementation of their rate increases until the Department of Insurance has adequate time to review their recent rate filings," Jones said in a statement.

Jones has asked Blue Shield to also hold off on planned increases of as much as 59 percent that would go into effect in March. The company did not answer a call requesting comment, but Jones said the company plans to move forward with the increase, which will affect about 200,000 customers.

Blue Shield has previously said it will use an outside consultant to review its rate increase plan and verify that it's needed.

“I am very concerned about the impact premium increases will have on policyholders, so I want to ensure that the Department has adequate time to review these rate filings for compliance with the law," Jones said. "Blue Shield policyholders will not have the benefit of this additional review period to ensure compliance with the law, but I will do what is within my power to determine whether Blue Shield’s proposed rates are in compliance with the law and to enforce that law."

Reach executive producer Paresh Dave here. Follow him on Twitter: @peard33.



Craig Gillespie directed this true story about "the most daring rescue mission in the history of the U.S. Coast Guard.”

Watch USC Annenberg Media's live State of the Union recap and analysis here.