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NY Health Insurance Rates To Rise In 2015


New York insurance regulators have approved higher health insurance rates for 2015, though the increases are smaller than what the industry wanted.

The Department of Financial Services announced the new rates Thursday. They include the rates for the state's new health benefits exchange.

For the individual market, the agency approved an average increase of 5.7 percent. A 6.7 percent average increase was granted for the small group market. Those increases are less than half of what insurers had requested.

Superintendent of Financial Services Benjamin Lawsky says the rates for individuals remain more than 50 percent lower than before the establishment of the exchange.

The New York Health Plan Association expressed concern about the rate increases. The trade group's president says inadequate increases could force some insurers to reduce their offerings.

© 2014 AP

Dave Lucas is WAMC’s Capital Region Bureau Chief. Born and raised in Albany, he’s been involved in nearly every aspect of local radio since 1981. Before joining WAMC, Dave was a reporter and anchor at WGY in Schenectady. Prior to that he hosted talk shows on WYJB and WROW, including the 1999 series of overnight radio broadcasts tracking the JonBenet Ramsey murder case with a cast of callers and characters from all over the world via the internet. In 2012, Dave received a Communicator Award of Distinction for his WAMC news story "Fail: The NYS Flood Panel," which explores whether the damage from Hurricane Irene and Tropical Storm Lee could have been prevented or at least curbed. Dave began his radio career as a “morning personality” at WABY in Albany.
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