Mass. Insurers To Revise Rates Or Face Fines; In Conn., A Lawmaker Hopes To Help With Insurance Denials

"State regulators [Tuesday] demanded that health insurers submit revised April 1 premium rates for tens of thousands of individuals and small businesses by 3 p.m. [Thursday] or face stiff fines," The Boston Globe reports. "The fines could run to as much as $5,000 a day per carrier, plus $1,000 for each consumer who is unable to buy coverage, according to a letter sent by Insurance Commissioner Joseph G. Murphy yesterday afternoon to Massachusetts." This ultimatum comes in the wake of a feud between insurers that sought to raise premium rates and state officials that mostly blocked their attempts (Weisman, 4/14).

Meanwhile, The Associated Press/The Boston Globe reports, "[a] Connecticut lawmaker who recently survived cancer says a bill that has passed the House of Representatives will provide consumers recourse if they're denied coverage by their health insurance companies. The legislation proposed by Rep. Andrew Fleischmann, a Democrat from West Hartford, requires insurers who deny coverage under certain circumstances to notify patients they may contact the state's Office of Healthcare Advocate if they believe they were wrongly denied coverage" (4/14).

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