Lawmakers Look to Remove Insurance Caps

AUGUSTA — From President Obama to the president of the Maine Senate, elected officials are focused on insurance premium rate hikes.


Anthem and MEGA Life and Health Insurance are seeking increases as high as 23 percent, catching the ire of Maine lawmakers and policyholders alike. Rate hikes are also proposed for policyholders in other states, with Michigan bracing for a proposed 56 percent rate increase.

“Over the past decade Anthem has asked for, and received, nine double-digit rate increases while enjoying steady profits almost every year,” Maine Senate President Elizabeth Mitchell (D-Kennebec County) testified before the Bureau of Insurance Feb. 22.

She cited Mainers who pay more than $6,000 per year for annual premiums, yet who face a $7,000 annual deductible. Few seek medical coverage approaching deductible levels, which Mitchell says equates to paying more than $13,000 in annual medical costs before an insurance company begins to pay.

“Having no health insurance is bad. Paying thousands of dollars for no health insurance is even worse,” Mitchell said.

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