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Maine regulator ready to approve double-digit rate hikes for ACA plans in '18

Maine Insurance Superintendent Eric Cioppa has agreed to approve double-digit rate increases for all three of the state's health insurance providers for their 2018 Affordable Care Act plans, but lower than what the insurers have sought.

Anthem Health Plans of Maine Inc., d/b/a Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield, sought revised average rate increases of 23.6% assuming the ACA's cost-sharing reduction, or CSR, payments will continue in 2018, and 30.7% if they are stopped. However, Cioppa said that he would approve average increases of 18.8% with respect to the base fling that assumed CSR payments will be funded. With regard to the unreimbursed filing, he said he will approve rates that result in an average increase of 19.9%.

For Maine Community Health Options, Cioppa plans to approve an average increase of 17.5%, compared to the company's revised average rate hike request of 19.7%. He also rejected the rate hike requests that assumed no payments, saying he would approve an increase that incorporates the same modifications to rate components and product design that apply to the base filing.

For Harvard Pilgrim Health Care Inc., Cioppa said he would approve an average increase of 27.1%, which is lower than the 29.2% hike sought by the company. With regards to rates that assume no payments, he rejected the revised average rate increase request of 39.0%, but said he would approve revised rates that result in an average increase of 36.7%.