Center for American Progress

Highmark Chutzpah: Pennsylvanians Have a Right to Know What Big Insurers Are Up To
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Highmark Chutzpah: Pennsylvanians Have a Right to Know What Big Insurers Are Up To

David Balto stresses the importance of health care reform after analyzing the anticompetitive practices of Pennsylvania's four largest insurers.

If there is one clear truth from the year-long health care debate in Washington, it is that health insurance markets are broken. Most are dominated by a single insurer, which has resulted in escalating premiums, skyrocketing profits, and record numbers of uninsured. Few states have the resolve or resources to take on these monopolies.

Here in Pennsylvania, Insurance Commissioner Joel Ario has been investigating the conduct of the state’s four Blue Cross Blue Shield plans, seeking to identify anticompetitive practices and repair our broken health insurance market. But as he was poised to expose their practices, Highmark, the insurance monopolist in Western Pennsylvania, sued, claiming that the department was unlawfully exceeding its investigative authority.

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