Anthem Blue Cross, California's largest for-profit health insurer, announced that it will raise its premiums for individual insurance policies by 30-39 percent.
California insurance regulators have asked Anthem Blue Cross to delay the controversial rate increases until May 1 so that independent actuaries can review the increases, and now the Obama administration is stepping in by asking the insurer to justify the increases.
HHS Sec. Sebelius said in a letter to Anthem President Leslie Margolin that she was "very disturbed" to learn of the rate increases at a time when so many families are already struggling financially.
Anthem has said it will respond to Sec. Sebelius's request as soon as possible, according to the report. Mr. Margolin has said that he would stop the rate increases if the independent actuaries find that the company is spending less than 70 percent of its premiums on benefits, which is required by state law, according to the report.
Read the Los Angeles Times´ report on the Anthem Blue Cross of California rate increases.