October 12th, 2009
11:24 AM ET
5 years ago

Health insurance rates to rise, industry group claims

WASHINGTON (CNN) – Health insurance premiums for the typical American family will increase by another $4,000 by 2019 under a key Senate reform plan, according to a new industry trade group analysis.

The report raised new questions about the political viability of the 10-year, $829 billion compromise bill drafted under the guidance of Senate Finance Committee Chairman Max Baucus, D-Montana.

The Finance Committee is expected to vote on the plan Tuesday. The vote represents a potential turning point in the health care debate. Baucus' committee is the last of five congressional panels to consider health care legislation before debate begins in the full House and Senate.

The report from the group America's Health Insurance Plans concludes that, under the Baucus plan, the costs of private health insurance would rise by 111 percent over the next decade. Under the current system, costs would rise by 79 percent, the report claims.


Premiums for individuals could rise by an extra $1,500 if the Baucus plan is implemented, the report states.

The report says premiums will rise faster under the Baucus plan in part because it doesn't do enough to require individuals to purchase coverage. A failure to draw enough young, healthy people into the insurance system would drive up rates for everyone else, it concludes.

At the same time, a proposed tax on employer-sponsored high-cost "Cadillac" plans could result in higher premiums for many private consumers, the report claims. It also highlights likely cost-shifting due to Medicare cuts and an array of new taxes and fees on industries tied to the health care sector.

The White House blasted the report Monday, calling it inaccurate and self-serving.

"This is a self-serving analysis from the insurance industry, one of the
major opponents of health insurance reform," White House spokesman Reid Cherlin
said.

"It comes on the eve of a vote that will reduce the industry's profits.
It is hard to take it seriously. The analysis completely ignores critical
policies (that) will lower costs for those that have insurance, expand coverage
and provide affordable health insurance options to millions of Americans who
are priced out of today's health insurance market or are locked out by unfair
insurance company practices."

Finance Committee spokesman Scott Mulhauser called the analysis "a health
insurance company hatchet job, plain and simple."

The analysis from America's Health Insurance Plans, first reported by the
Washington Post, was conducted by the firm PriceWaterhouseCoopers.

–CNN's Dana Bash, Dan Lothian and Alan Silverleib contributed to this report


Filed under: Health care • Senate
soundoff (109 Responses)
  1. mike

    Shoot,
    Cnn, then Obama must be in alot of trouble...

    October 12, 2009 11:25 am at 11:25 am |
  2. A. Goodwin

    Lies and more lies. Who wants to make a bet that the group America's Health Insurance Plans, is bought and paid for by the insurance industry? And WHY do you think the insurance industry wants to SCARE us out of reform....well, their corporate CEO's simply will have to downgrade to the 10 billion dollar jet from the 20 billion dollar jet.

    WE WILL NOT BE SCARED BY YOUR TACTICS. We need refrom NOW!!

    October 12, 2009 11:26 am at 11:26 am |
  3. ken

    CNN, get over yourself!
    How about being positive once..

    The CBO came out and said the deficit will be reduced by health care reform...
    Now we should believe insurance companies? Really?

    October 12, 2009 11:27 am at 11:27 am |
  4. quarterback

    They lie. They are trying to protect outrageous profits.

    October 12, 2009 11:27 am at 11:27 am |
  5. Jay T.

    Baucus's bill sucks and will not the be the final bill. The public option needs to be there or else this is one great waste of time and energy. Also, please check your sources before posting something. If the source is someone linked to a health insurance company, of course they are going to mislead you. They are capitalist pigs.

    October 12, 2009 11:28 am at 11:28 am |
  6. AZ Jake

    Oh no ... The Boogieman ... better be frightened that they will make it even harder to buy their product.

    Bullwash !

    October 12, 2009 11:28 am at 11:28 am |
  7. Jim

    That is how a government takeover happens. The government forces private companies to raise thier premiums so no one will buy them, thus forcing companies that have been around for over 100 years to go out of business. Then the government can take over the entire industry. It is a very scary time to be an american, when we have someone who grew up in Indonesia as our president, who is changing america from a capatalist country to a socialist country.

    October 12, 2009 11:30 am at 11:30 am |
  8. independent

    Let me get this straight. The insurance companies are telling us not to pass this medical coverage modification because they, the insurance companies, will make more money than they are now.

    The insurance companies are warning us not to do this because they don't want to make more money?

    Something doesn't seem to make sense here.

    October 12, 2009 11:30 am at 11:30 am |
  9. DennisG

    This isn't a "report", it's a threat by the industry in an effort to further scare the american public away from any kind of change whatsoever in the current high profit system. After 8 years of an administration and right wing media that routinely ( and unfortunately successfully) used mis-information and fear to control this country it's just business as usual.

    October 12, 2009 11:30 am at 11:30 am |
  10. Sam Sixpack

    If these folks would just shut up the architects of the Glorious Health Care Scam could steal that $500 billion out of your Grandmother's Medicare.

    October 12, 2009 11:31 am at 11:31 am |
  11. G2

    We need to take a deep breath and stop this Democratic Healthcare reform....start over! instead? DO MALPRACTICE REFORM! GET RID OF PRE-EXISTING CONDITIONS! INSURE CHILDREN! If these 3 things work then next year we can consider 3 more. But right now this Democratic healthcare reform isn't what the people want or need and will bankrupt us. They are not listening to us. They need to be voted out of office. Nancy Pelosi needs to be voted out of office. We need to focus on the economy not a complete healthcare overhaul.

    October 12, 2009 11:32 am at 11:32 am |
  12. Garland

    Oh, and we're suppose to believe them? This is crazy, my premiums are rising every six months for less and less benefits. The insurance companies are in a panic because they don't want to lose their huge bonuses and rich lifestyles. I hope we get a public option and I hope I qualify for it. We and the medical industry are slaves to the insurance companies. I personally would prefer a single payer system and screw the insurance companies!

    October 12, 2009 11:33 am at 11:33 am |
  13. demwit

    Well of course they are..., only morons believe in deficit neutral healthcare coverage.

    October 12, 2009 11:33 am at 11:33 am |
  14. Ben in Texas

    What would you expect a health insurance mouthpiece organization say? They have a vested interest in the status quo, that is until they kill this goose and destroy our economy. I guess the health care execs will have retired to Fiji by that time.

    They're right in a way, though. The Baucus plan is very flawed, because it leaves these insurance moguls in business.

    October 12, 2009 11:33 am at 11:33 am |
  15. Rick from Murfreesboro, TN

    More scare tactics from the Health Insurance industry which controls so many of our Congress people.

    October 12, 2009 11:34 am at 11:34 am |
  16. Jeff Brown in Jersey

    Health insurance rates will rise, and rise, and rise until we fix the broken, wasteful system!

    October 12, 2009 11:34 am at 11:34 am |
  17. Joe

    There is nothing these cynical bastards won't stoop to in order to prevent any kind of meaningful reform. Full steam ahead, democrats!

    October 12, 2009 11:35 am at 11:35 am |
  18. maximus (NY)

    This is nothing but a fib to panic currently insured individuals and make them refute the proposed reform plan. And then again if this is true, they have better join the government-sponsored program that will reduce their premium and offer them better service. Got Ya! Liars.

    October 12, 2009 11:35 am at 11:35 am |
  19. mjm

    Of course insurance cost will go up under the Baucus plan and HR 3200. How else are they going to force everyone onto a public option?

    You think taxing insurance companies brings down cost?

    Not so much.

    The only plan here is to push health care costs onto tax payers instead of GM because that's what the UAW wants.

    Somehow, they think we'll by Malibu’s if the government pays for health care.

    October 12, 2009 11:36 am at 11:36 am |
  20. Ray

    And the rates going up would be the fault of the insurance companies, not the government.

    Let's make it simple - have congress make it a law that all insurance companies have to give people the EXACT same insurance coverage that the people in Washington have (That's a little over $500 a year for an individual policy, right?) OR the people in Washington have to have the EXACT same insurance us poor folks in the real world have, same problems, same insurance companies trying to find ways to NOT pay.

    October 12, 2009 11:36 am at 11:36 am |
  21. Drew

    The insurance industry is like the bank and credit card companies – they've been ripping us off for years! They'll simply just have to find another way to bend us over!

    October 12, 2009 11:37 am at 11:37 am |
  22. Brian

    So the plan doesn't work for AHIP because it won't drive enough healthy customers to the insurance providers? That alone is reason enough to have a government option, and one day, a single payor insurance system.

    October 12, 2009 11:38 am at 11:38 am |
  23. Henry Miller, Libertarian, Cary, North Carolina

    So We the Taxpayers of the United States get handed a trillion-dollar tab by the government and a $4,000/year bill by the insurance companies. We get screwed from two directions simultaneously.

    Is this really the kind of reform you people want?

    October 12, 2009 11:38 am at 11:38 am |
  24. Drew

    The insurance industry is like the bank and credit card companies – they've been ripping us off for years! They'll simply just have to find another way to bend us over! God bless America!

    October 12, 2009 11:38 am at 11:38 am |
  25. FactCheck

    And we all know how unbiased these industry trade groups are, don't we?

    October 12, 2009 11:39 am at 11:39 am |
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