‘AN OUTRAGE’: Raptakis on RI Insurance Hike Approval

A vocal critic of insurance companies since their announcements to seek new rate hikes, RI Senator Lou Raptakis sounded off today after the hikes were OKd…


(Coventry July 7, 2010) State Senator Lou Raptakis, who introduced legislation earlier this year to tie health insurance rate increases to the Consumer Price Index, is calling the State Health Insurance Commissioner's decision to OK a package of double digit rate hikes for the state's health insurers an outrage.

Commissioner Christopher Koller approved rate hikes for Blue Cross, United and Tufts.  The lowest increase was 8.4% for United Health Care, which also received the highest rate increase of 12.3%.  Tufts received approvals for hikes of 11 and 10.2%, while Blue Cross received a 9.8% rate increase for its small business customers and larger commercial customers.

“Instead of sending a strong message to insurers that they need to cut their administrative costs before seeking huge rate hikes, Commissioner Koller essentially said customers have to keep suffering while companies like Blue Cross can continue to spend money on fancy new office buildings,” said Raptakis.  “This decision is an outrage which forces businesses in the state to cut expenses and eliminate jobs in order to pay their health care bills, while letting the insurers continue to jack up their rates with no regard for their customers.”