As you probably already know, healthcare isn't cheap in Vermont. In recent years, our state's healthcare has been among the costliest in the nation, mostly due to low population and little competition in the so-called marketplace. This year, the state's two health insurers -- MVP and Blue Cross -- have again sought rate increases, averaging over 8%. If you're already struggling to afford healthcare and haven't seen an increase in your income in a while, such hefty increases in insurance premiums are going to take a toll.
For what it's worth, the Green Mountain Care Board (which gets to approve rate increases for insurance companies) is now taking comments from the public as they review the proposed rates and decide how much of an increase to approve. Last year, Blue Cross requested an average rate increase of 9.8% but was only approved for 7.7%. MVP requested an average rate increase of 15.3% but was approved for an average increase of 10.9%. One supposes this is better than nothing (actually, a rate increase of "nothing" would be great but apparently that can never be).
Want to weigh in? Submit your comments directly to GMCB via their online form at http://ratereview.vermont.gov or by email to GMCB.email@example.com. Comments will be accepted through July 26, 2016.
You can also go to Montpelier to testify in person. Hearings are scheduled for July 20 and 21, starting at 9 am, at the GMCB board room at 89 Main Street, Montpelier.
While it's true that whether we comment or not, prices are going to go up, there's at least some consolation in complaining...