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Massachusetts agency asks insurers to cut rates

Posted On Mon, February 14, 2011

People that receive state-subsidized healthcare in Massachusetts may see their premiums decrease in the not-too-distant future.

According to the Associated Press, the Connector Authority, which oversees the Commonwealth Care program, is calling on state insurers to lower their rates for 160,000 low- and moderate-income residents living in the Bay State.

Normally, the Connector Authority would make up the difference, but the state agency is facing a budget shortfall that's projected to be $82 million.

Lower rates means greater affordability, but the AP reports healthcare advocates fear lowering rates may translate into insurance companies offering fewer services and hospital choices for consumers.

The Commonwealth Care program was installed when Mitt Romney was the state's governor and allows residents to be insured at a low rate if they qualify financially. For instance, if someone makes less than $32,500 a year, is a U.S. citizen and is uninsured, that person would qualify to receive financial assistance under the program.

Political observers often compare the Massachusetts healthcare law, which requires everyone to be covered, with the U.S. government's plan to insure all Americans.


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