More than 36,000 Oregonians with small group health coverage could see their rates rise between 8 1/2% and 14 1/2% next January.
Jesse O'Brien with the watchdog group OSPRIG says their independent analysis does not support one insurance company, PacificSource’s claim that they should hike their rates by 14 ½%. "It's certainly true that the underlying cost of medical care is going up, it's a big problem. We really feel that in the information that PacificSource has made available so far, they really haven't shown that costs are going up as fast as they say they are. We just have a lot of questions about how the data they've provided really shows that. Because it looks to us as though they should be raising rate by a significantly smaller amount based on the data they're giving."
PacificSource and the Oregon Insurance Division is holding a hearing today in Salem that will be an open door for public comments and O'Brien plans to testify and question such a big rate hike.
The Insurance Division will decide to approve or deny the hikes in the next few weeks and they would go into effect in January 2013.