Consumers in states around the country to get premium rebates

Local news outlets report on a federal announcement Thursday showing how much money will be sent back to people and employers under rules that say insurers must spend at least 80 percent of premium payments on medical care.

The Oregonian: Three Health Insurers Will Pay Rebates In Oregon
Three health insurers in Oregon owe rebates to consumers under a federal rule limiting administrative expenses for carriers. According to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, 49,412 people will benefit from refunds averaging $101 per family covered. Only about 23,000 people who purchased their own policy directly, in the individual market, will see a check, however. Rebates for employer-provided insurance will be send to the businesses that purchased the policy (Budnick, 7/24).

Georgia Health News: Insurers To Pay $11 Million In Georgia Rebates
A federal rule on health insurers' spending will bring $11 million in rebates to Georgia individuals and employers this summer. Federal figures released Thursday show that 304,000 Georgians will benefit from the refunds, with an average rebate of $53 per family, as a result of the "Medical Loss Ratio" (MLR) rule on 2013 insurance plans. Created by the Affordable Care Act, the MLR standard generally requires health insurers to spend at least 80 percent of the premium dollars they collect on medical care or activities to improve the quality of health care (Miller, 7/24).

The Denver Post: Coloradans Could See $2.7 Million in Premium Refunds From ACA Rule
Health and Human Services on Thursday announced that 52,277 consumers in Colorado will get $2.7 million in refunds, an average of $93 a family, from insurance companies this summer because of the Affordable Care Act's 80/20 rule (Draper, 7/24).

The Baltimore Sun: Marylanders Received $17M In Insurance Refunds Under Health Reform Rule
Health insurers refunded more than $17 million to Marylanders last year because of a rule in the Affordable Care Act limiting the amounts the companies can spend on overhead costs as opposed to providing care, according to federal data. About 206,000 consumers in Maryland received the refunds, an average of $140 per family, according to a report from the Department of Health and Human Services released Thursday (Dance, 7/24).

Des Moines Register: $1.8M In Health Insurance Rebates Ordered In Iowa
About 3,500 Iowans will receive rebates from their health insurer, thanks to a rule that is part of the Affordable Care Act. Another 11,100 Iowans will have rebates sent to their employers. The consumers receiving direct rebates purchased individual health insurance policies from Wellmark Blue Cross & Blue Shield. The other affected Iowans obtained Coventry Health Care policies via their employers. The rebates, totaling nearly $1.8 million, are going to people whose insurance plans didn't spend as much as required last year on health-care services. The rules, which are part of the Affordable Care Act, require that policies covering individuals or small businesses spend at least 80 percent of premium dollars on medical services instead of on administrative costs or profit. Large-group plans must spend at least 85 percent of premiums on medical care (Leys, 7/24).

http://www.kaiserhealthnews.orgThis article was reprinted from with permission from the Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation. Kaiser Health News, an editorially independent news service, is a program of the Kaiser Family Foundation, a nonpartisan health care policy research organization unaffiliated with Kaiser Permanente.

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