On Thursday of last week, Consumer Health First submitted a letter signed by 40 individuals and organizations, to the Insurance Commissioner. In the letter, we expressed our concern over the exorbitant rates requested by CareFirst, in particular. We also provided a series of recommendations on steps the Commissioner could take to strengthen the rate review process and stabilize Maryland's individual health insurance market while providing more affordable rates for consumers. These comments will be the basis for the testimony to be given by Consumer Health First President, Beth Sammis when the Maryland Insurance Administration holds their public hearing.
Here come the moving targets:
- That public hearing to get input on the published rates was rescheduled from today to Monday, July 30 from 1:00 to 4:00 pm.
- On Saturday, CMS put risk adjustment payments on hold. It is unclear at this time what this action will mean for 2019 rates or the short- and long-term stability of the individual market. Read more: CHF letter and an article in the New York Times.
For further background on the impact of federal actions and particularly the challenges for those above 400% Federal Poverty Level see this Washington Post article that cites the CMS Early Snapshot of 2018 effectuated enrollments and Trends in Subsidized and Unsubsidized Individual Health Insurance Market Enrollment.