WASHINGTON BUREAU — An Obama administration official defended the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA) rate review provisions today at a Senate hearing.
Sen. Tom Harkin, D-Iowa, chairman of the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pension Committee — the committee that organized the hearing — said the PPACA rate review provisions are helping to rein in health insurance premiums.
Sen. Mike Enzi, R-Wyo., said PPACA is already driving up insurance premiums.
Steve Larsen, director of the Center for Consumer Information and Insurance Oversight at the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), testified that the PPACA rate review provisions are bringing more transparency to the rate review process and that those provisions and others, such as the minimum medical loss ratio (MLR) provisions, already are making a differences in states such as North Carolina.
The PPACA rate review provisions and HHS rate review regulations require either state or federal officials to review notices of health insurance rate increases that exceed 10% and require that information about the proposed increases be posted on the Web.