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Blue Cross Will Seek Smaller Rate Hike In NC

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North Carolina's largest health insurance company is pulling back on its requested price increase for coverage through the Affordable Care Act.

Blue Cross and Blue Shield of North Carolina said Wednesday it doesn't need a 23 percent price hike next year, a request that's often been used as evidence of rising prices and fewer choices under former President Barack Obama's overhaul law. Blue Cross said in May it would need just about 9 percent more except for funding uncertainty by Congress.  Blue Cross says it has informed state regulators it now needs to increase premiums an average of about 14 percent next year for individual ACA policies. It offers the policies statewide, and is the only insurance provider offering plans in Western North Carolina under the ACA.  Cigna sells ACA policies in five counties near Raleigh. It's requesting an average 32 percent increase in 2018.

Copyright 2017 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.  (Matt Bush of Blue Ridge Public Radio also contributed information in this report)

The Associated Press is one of the largest and most trusted sources of independent newsgathering, supplying a steady stream of news to its members, international subscribers and commercial customers. AP is neither privately owned nor government-funded; instead, it's a not-for-profit news cooperative owned by its American newspaper and broadcast members.
Matt Bush joined Blue Ridge Public Radio as news director in August 2016. Excited at the opportunity the build up the news service for both stations as well as help launch BPR News, Matt made the jump to Western North Carolina from Washington D.C. For the 8 years prior to coming to Asheville, he worked at the NPR member station in the nation's capital as a reporter and anchor. Matt primarily covered the state of Maryland, including 6 years of covering the statehouse in Annapolis. Prior to that, he worked at WMAL in Washington and Metro Networks in Pittsburgh, the city he was born and raised in.
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