Washington warns health insurers: 'Don't jack up rates'

Insurance companies are not only raising rates considerably, they’re blaming the increases on the healthcare reform law — a move the Obama administration isn’t happy with.
Last week, The Wall Street Journal reported that some insurance companies hiked up their premiums nearly 20% in September — and blamed some of the increases on the mandates of the health reform law.
The Obama administration’s response: Those who enact “unjustified” rate hikes linked to the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA) will be blocked from the new state-run insurance exchanges.
Millions of people are expected to use the exchanges starting in 2014 to buy coverage.
Healthcare reform didn’t receive all of the blame for the recent rate increases. Rising premiums were also attributed to the higher price of medical services and the impact of younger, healthier people dropping coverage due to budget constraints in the tight economy.
But according to Kathleen Sebelius, secretary of Health and Human Services, some insurers have begun notifying enrollees that their premiums will increase as a result of the PPACA — an action that will not be tolerated.
Sebelius’ views are shared with a number of Democrats who are calling for stiffer premium regulations. Legislation has already been proposed that would give the federal government the power to reject unreasonable rate increases.
Do you think the government should step in and try to minimize the rate hikes imposed by insurance companies? Share your thoughts in the Comments Box below.