GMCB approves health insurance rate increases of 11.7% for Blue Cross and 18.3% for MVP

GMCB approves health insurance rate increases of 11.7% for Blue Cross and 18.3% for MVP

Vermont Business Magazine The Green Mountain Care Board (GMCB) on Thursday issued decisions calling on Blue Cross Blue Shield of Vermont (BCBSVT) and MVP Health Plan, Inc to reduce the premiums they charge individuals and small businesses for health insurance plans in 2023 wanted to bill. BCBSVT asked for a 15.4% increase and 11.7% in the Small Group (Business) plan; MVP requested a 23.4% raise and received 18.3%. The increase in rates for individuals was similar (see below). Despite the cuts, the rates are still the highest approved since August 2019.

As of March 2022, approximately 72,000 Vermonters were enrolled in these plans.

The large rate hikes proposed by MVP and BCBSVT this year have been driven by several factors, including rising costs of specialty pharmaceuticals and higher costs paid to healthcare providers to deliver services, which in turn are being driven by inflation and staffing pressures faced by many sectors the economy.

After a thorough review, the Board, within the limits of its statutory authority and after considering a number of statutory factors, has reduced the proposed rates of BCBSVT and MVP by the amounts set out in the following tables:

Small group – Average annual increase from 2022 rates

insurer

Price Request (PMPM)**

Board Approved (PMPM)**

BCBSVT

15.4% ($94 PMPM)

11.7%* ($71 PMPM)

MVP

23.4% ($135 per minute)

18.3%* ($106 per minute)

Individual and Family – Average annual increase from 2022 rates

insurer

Price Request (PMPM)**

Board Approved (PMPM)**

BCBSVT

14.9% ($104 per minute)

11.4%* ($79 per minute)

MVP

24.4% ($164 per minute)

19.3%* ($130 per minute)

*These rate increases represent averages for different benefit plans with different co-payments. For small groups, approved plan-level increases range from 9.1% to 15.3% for BCBSVT and 10.5% to 21.5% for MVP. For individual and family plans, approved plan-level increases range from 8.8% to 15.3% for BCBSVT and 11.3% to 26.3% for MVP.

**Per Member Per Month (PMPM) is the dollar amount a member pays each month for a health plan.

Health care subsidies and additional resources

  • Around 5,500 Vermonters could still save money on their monthly premium in 2022 by enrolling through Vermont Health Connect (VHC). To find out if you are eligible for a subsidy, use the VHC plan comparison tool.
  • Vermont residents can use the rate comparison tool to compare 2023 rates beginning October 14, 2022. Open registration for 2023 fares begins November 1, 2022.
  • As of August 4, 2022, it remains uncertain whether Congress will renew the 2023 Extended Premium Tax Credits initially provided by the American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA). For information about ARPA and how it affects you and your entitlement to premium support, click here.
  • If you have questions about your health insurance or accessing health care, please contact the Vermont Legal Aid Office of the Health Care Advocate at 1-800-917-7787.

Last year’s Board-reviewed submissions were significantly impacted by the “unwinding” of the 2022 individual and small group health insurance markets, made to take advantage of expanded subsidies available to individuals under ARPA. The segregation of markets meant that small group premiums (BCBSVT -6.2%; MVP 0.8%) and individual premiums (BCBSVT 4.7%; MVP 12.7%) compared to what else would have been, were lowered, with the increased subsidies compensating for the increase in premiums in the individual market.

4/8/2022. Montpelier, VT – The Green Mountain Care Board

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