New York’s Department of Financial Services (DOFS) announced today that UnitedHealthgroup (also known as Oxford here in NY) has agreed to make all of its rate increase support documentation public.
Last month, the DOFS decided that rate filing information should be made public to allow consumers and small businesses to understand why their insurer wants to raise rates and to make informed arguments for or against that as part of the rate review process. The insurance industry – including UnitedHealthcare – by and large responded with formal objections to this.
Last week, on October 19, the DOFS issued a legal decision rejecting the insurers’ arguments for keeping this information secret. Insurers can still file an administrative appeal of that decision and possibly take the issue to court if that appeal is denied.
However, UnitedHealthcare – the largest health insurer in the state – has now formally withdrawn it previous objections and agreed that its filings should be made public.
This is a big win for New York’s consumers and small businesses, and has made the DOFS’s position with respect to the other objecting insurers that much stronger. It is not clear yet if any of the others will be filing an appeal or taking UnitedHealthcare’s lead and spilling their own beans.
HCFANY issued a press release on this earlier today, which you can read here.