Some secrets need to be told.

Posted October, 14 2011 by arianne

Advocacy groups around the state are taking initiative to show their support for the prior approval process and the public release of health insurer rate increase justification memos.

HCFANY has been working to make this information available on the grounds that consumers have a right to know exactly why they’re being asked to pay so much more money every year for their health insurance premiums.  To be honest, had health plans been asking for smaller, seemingly more reasonable hikes then we probably wouldn’t have even bothered.  But, when asked to hand over an arm, a leg, and a firstborn child…well, it’s only natural to ask the question: “WHAT THE HECK FOR???”

The State Department of Financial Services (DOFS) (formerly the State Departments of Insurance & Banking, in case you were wondering) agrees that it’s a wee bit shady for health plans to not make their justifications for their rate increases public, especially when the public is supposed to be able to weigh in on this stuff.  It’s pretty hard to make an informed argument for or against something if you’re not, you know, informed.

And, it turns out, lots of other folks agree.  Advocacy groups around the state have been sending letters to the DOFS is support of making these rate justification memos public, a few of which are linked below (including HCFANY’s own) – (LIST HAS BEEN UPDATED!):

If you feel strongly about this issue, and think you have a right to know why your insurance premiums are going up, then feel free to make your voice heard too by sending in your own letter.  We’ve provided a template letter that you can use here, if you’re interested.   

Letters should be sent to:

Superintendent Benjamin Lawsky

New York State Department of Financial Services

One State Street

New York, NY 10004