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November 2010

Health Insurance Brokers May Ask Congress to Protect Commissions

Insurance Journal

As insurance brokers feared, the Obama Administration has not exempted broker commissions from the formula for the medical loss ratio that health insurers must adhere to beginning in 2011.

Brokers say they may ask Congress to intervene if the medical loss ratio (MLR) formula is not altered to protect their fees and commissions.

The MLR requirement is part of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act and requires health insurers to spend 80 to 85 percent of consumers’ premiums on direct care for patients. The intention is to limit the share of premiums that insurers spend on administrative costs and profits, including executive salaries, overhead and marketing.

Golden State Looks On as Others Threaten To Cut Medicaid

by Dan Diamond, California Healthline Contributing Editor

The federal health reform law is intended to bring sweeping improvements to the nation’s health care system — but analysts repeatedly have warned that its many provisions may bring unintended consequences, too.

High-risk pools could force some ill patients to temporarily go without coverage. Formal medical-loss ratios may push low-income workers out of employee-sponsored health insurance. New regulation could spell the end of health savings accounts.

The most far-reaching fear: state-based insurance health exchanges could upend traditional paths toward health coverage.

Md. Health Insurers Worry About Federal Health Care Reform

From: City Biz List Baltimore

 By Barbara Pash

Maryland health insurers told legislators Tuesday that federal health care reform would lead to higher insurance premiums, higher administrative costs and put some insurance brokers and agents out of business.

Acting Maryland Insurance Commissioner Beth Sammis told the Joint Committee on Health Care Delivery and Financing that because Maryland already has many of the federal requirements in place before the 2014 timeline for full implementation of the act, “in many areas there will be no change in premiums.”

Healthcare mandates: higher cost, less choice

From: The Daily Campus, The Independent News Source of the University of Connecticut

By Thomas Dilling
Staff Columnist

This past Saturday, as Stewart and Colbert rallied for “sanity and/or fear” in D.C., President Obama traveled to Connecticut for the third time this campaign season in an effort to rally Democrat party loyalists, who waited in line before dawn to secure their glimpse of him. Surprisingly not on the agenda was any mention that it was the seven-month mark of the President signing his health care agenda, sometimes known as “Obamacare,” into law.