CNA, Advocates Protest Kaiser Rate Hikes Amid $21.7B Reserve Fund
On Wednesday, hundreds of nurses held a press conference and rally at Kaiser Permanente's headquarters in Oakland to protest rate hikes and reductions in patient care services that occurred despite billions of dollars in reserve funds, the San Francisco Chronicle's "ChronRX" reports (Colliver, "ChronRX," San Francisco Chronicle, 5/6).
Details of Protest
The nurses -- who are members of the California Nurses Association -- and consumer advocates said the health maintenance organization has a reserve fund of $21.7 billion -- 1,626% higher than the state requires.
Meanwhile, the protestors said Kaiser has cut patient care services and raised consumer premiums, costing small group policyholders $18 million and costing individual policyholders $59 million.
In response to the rate hikes, CNA is backing a ballot measure that would allow state regulators to control health insurance rates in California. The measure would give regulators the power to force insurers to provide consumers with refunds when excessive amounts are available in reserves (CNA release, 5/6).
Consumer Watchdog also is backing the ballot measure, according to "ChronRX" ("ChronRX," San Francisco Chronicle, 5/6).This is part of the California Healthline Daily Edition, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.