Tag Archives: Blue Cross Blue Shield of Illinois

Illinois Residents Can Expect Big Raise in Health Insurance Costs

Photo courtesy of taxcredits.net
Photo courtesy of taxcredits.net

If Illinois residents can judge from Texas and Oklahoma, they can expect health insurance fees to rise by about 50 percent in the coming months. Chicago-based Health Care Service Corp owns Blue Cross in all three states, and they have requested a 53.7 percent increase in Texas and a 49.2 percent increase in Oklahoma, across its Affordable Care Act plans. It is not a sure thing that these price hikes will be approved, and if the exact numbers are not approved, what kind of rate hikes to expect instead.

Blue Cross is the most popular insurer in Illinois, as it is in Texas and Oklahoma. Mark Spencer, spokesman for HCSC said Illinois’ proposed hikes have not been made public yet. He said it is premature to speculate about the local price hikes since pricing is based on local conditions.

The Illinois Department of Insurance agreed that the rate plans proposed by Blue Cross and other insurers are still under review. It is up to the federal government to publish the new ACA rates, and are planning to do so for Illinois on August 1st, said the spokeswoman for the department, Anjali Julka.

Spencer would not comment on what the company would do if the requested rate hike was not granted. Last year Blue Cross pulled out of the health exchange in New Mexico when the state’s insurance regulators turned down HCSC’s proposal to raise their rates by 51 percent.

Paula Steiner to Take Over Chairmanship of Health Care Service Corp

Blue Cross Blue Shield Tower in Chicago
Blue Cross Blue Shield Tower in Chicago

Meet Paula Steiner. She will be taking over for Patricia Hemingway Hall, who was the previous CEO of Health Care Service Corp. She is set to lead Chicago’s biggest private company this coming January, a company which is the parent of Blue Cross Blue Shield of Illinois.

Steiner, who is 58 years old, has been with Blue Cross Blue Shield for over 30 years. Today she is HCSC’s executive vice president and chief strategy officer. She also is the chief to external affairs, including government relations and advertising.

The outgoing CEO, Patricia Hall is 62 and was with HCSC for over 23 years, spending the last seven years as CEO. The company offers BC & BS plans in five different states and is the country’s fourth-larges health insurer, having almost 16 million subscribers.

“Given her experience, her tenacity to solve tough issues and her ability to lead people, Pat has been the ideal CEO to navigate this company so successfully through the twists and turns of our industry over the last several years,” Milton Carroll, chairman of Health Care Service, said.