NU Online News Service, July 21, 2003, 5:24 p.m. EDT – Health maintenance organizations estimate they will raise rates about 14% in 2004, according to Milliman USA, Seattle.

A year ago, HMOs told Milliman they expected to raise rates about 17%.

Milliman has based the 2004 statistics on survey responses from 72 HMOs.

Although participating HMOs may be asking for somewhat smaller increases than they were demanding a year ago, 2004 still seems likely to be the fifth straight year of double-digit HMO cost increases, Milliman notes.