The Obama Administration has been touting PPACA’s MLR rebates since the law’s inception and it looks like they are giving themselves a big pat on the back this week concerning rate review. In a report released by HHS it states that insurance rate oversight provision of the healthcare law helped consumers save $1.2 billion on insurance premium costs since 2011. The law provided $250 million in grants to help states bolster their review of insurers' rates. It also gave the federal government the power to review certain premium increases but not the power to stop them from taking effect.
According to the report, which did not examine the large group market, it was found that the average rate request increase in the individual insurance market dropped by 12%, saving consumers roughly $311 million. Meanwhile, the average rate request increase in the small group market declined by 19%, saving consumers about $866 million. The report also highlighted that the requests for rate increases of 10% or more in 2012 were less than in previous years. Insurance companies have responded that the report puts too much emphasis on premium costs rather than the increasing cost of healthcare, which is the ultimate problem.