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New Anthem Blue Cross Medical Insurance Rates and What They Mean for Consumers

Medical insurance rates

To go up, or not to go up: That is the question. At least, that has been the question as of late regarding the potential impact that health care reform will have on Anthem Blue Cross medical insurance rates as well as the other insurers.

For ordinary American consumers, the question is a pertinent one. On average, the annual premium in the United States for a person was $2,985; and for a family, $6,328. While this cost varies depending on several factors, including location, one can easily see how paying for medical insurance can be a burden. This possibility is why many Anthem customers are wondering if Anthem Blue Cross medical insurance rates will increase or decrease with the new health care reform.

Are Anthem Blue Cross Medical Insurance Rates Going Up?

In February 2010, Anthem Blue Cross surprised its customers, the government, and many in the industry by announcing that its premiums were going to be increased by up to 39% across the board. After a lively public debate over the increase, Anthem Blue Cross reexamined its data with an independent actuary and withdrew the rate increase proposal.

Anthem has yet to formally file a new proposal - so will rates go up, stay the same, or decrease? It is unlikely that rates will go down for the average consumer. The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA), signed into law in March 2010, contains many provisions that could result in an increase in premiums for insurers; which means that Anthem Blue Cross medical insurance rates will likely rise.

What Higher Rates Mean For Consumers

Although those who are currently affected by Anthem Blue Cross medical insurance rates will likely be subjected to rate increases, they may benefit under the new law as well. For example, insurers under PPACA will not be allowed to reject potential subscribers for pre-existing conditions or charge higher rates - and will not be permitted to charge higher rates for current illnesses. Also, Anthem Blue Cross medical insurance rates will be held down by the use of accountable care organizations (ACOs), founded on research that shows that as much as 30 percent of health care spending can be eliminated without sacrificing quality of care. Anthem, California's largest insurer, is establishing an ACO to reduce costs and moderate rates for its customers.

In short, even if Anthem Blue Cross medical insurance rates increase, the average consumer will likely be spared the full brunt of rising costs through healthcare reform.

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