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Evergreen State Insurers To Raise Individual Health Rates

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Regence Group affiliates in Washington state say they will be increasing individual health plan rates by an average of 19%.

The increases will affect 137,000 consumers in the individual health market, and rates for some individual policyholders will increase 40%, Washington regulators report.

The new rates are scheduled to take effect July 1.

Washington regulators say they have been trying unsuccessfully to persuade state lawmakers to give them the authority to regulate rates in the individual health insurance market.

Regence, Portland, Ore., believes regulators already have enough authority and want to see Washington state try other approaches to expanding access to health coverage, according to a spokesman in the group’s Seattle office.