Dear MoveOn member,
Blue Cross has just announced that it's immediately raising premiums charged to hundreds of thousands of individual customers by as much as 39%—even though their parent company's profits soared to a record $4.7 billion last year.1
Even worse, the insurer has so far refused to explain why they're increasing their rates, and warned that they might do so again this year without warning.
The Obama administration is demanding answers from Anthem Blue Cross, and Congress has opened an investigation.2 But Blue Cross is only going to respond if this story becomes a major public-relations problem for them.
So it's time to turn up the heat. Let's join the growing call for an explanation and send a powerful public message that these abuses by Big Insurance are unacceptable.
Clicking here will add your name to the petition:
The petition says: "Anthem Blue Cross must provide a detailed explanation for their exorbitant rate increases, or else roll them back immediately."
These latest rate increases in California—reportedly the largest ever by Blue Cross for individual policyholders in the state—are yet another powerful example of how badly broken our health care system is and how desperately we need to hold Big Insurance accountable for exploiting their customers.
Anthem Blue Cross's parent company made record profits last year despite losing 1.4 million customers—increasing their profit margins by cherrypicking the healthiest people to insure.3
Then they can turn around and dramatically increase the rates they charge to the customers they've kept, because there's almost no rules governing rate increases. In fact, the company doesn't even have to publicly reveal how many customers' rates they've increased, or by how much.
The good news is that Kathleen Sebelius, President Obama's Secretary of Health and Human Services, is already publicly demanding answers from the company. And the House Energy and Commerce Committee has announced plans to hold hearings to investigate.
But to get Anthem to clean up their act—and show politicians and the media that we can't afford any more abuses by Big Insurance—we all need to lend our voices. Clicking here will add your name to the petition:
Thanks for all you do.
–Kat, Michael, Carrie, Stephen, and the rest of the team
1. "Anthem Blue Cross dramatically raising rates for Californians with individual health policies," The Los Angeles Times, February 4, 2010
"WellPoint sees profit grow eightfold in fourth quarter," The Los Angeles Times, January 28, 2010
2. "Sebelius Calls on Anthem Blue Cross to Publicly Justify 39 Percent Premium Increase," U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, February 8, 2010
"Congress opens probe into Anthem Blue Cross rate increases," The Los Angeles Times, February 10, 2010
3. "Waxman and Stupak to WellPoint: We Request Your Testimony," Office of House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, February 9, 2010
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