BANGOR, Maine — From Presque Isle, Deer Isle, Camden and Mapleton, Mainers traveled to Bangor Wednesday afternoon to protest the latest health insurance cost increase requested by Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Maine.
“The hogs have come to the trough to feed again at the expense of those who use the coverage the least,” said lobsterman Leroy Bridges of Deer Isle, who purchases individual coverage for himself and his wife, with a $15,000 annual deductible each. “If they’re allowed a rate increase even close to what they’re asking, we’ll have to let it go; we got no choice.”
Bridges did not say how much his high-deductible coverage costs, but others at the meeting said similar policies cost close to $500 a month.
Anthem says the 23 percent average increase in the cost of its HealthChoice and Lumenos plans — for people who purchase health coverage individually instead of through an employer or other group — is needed to offset the growing cost and use of health care services and the unique challenges of the insurance market in Maine.
About 11,000 Anthem policyholders would be affected by the increase, which would take effect July 1 if approved.
Click on the link for the rest of today’s story by Meg Haskell in the Bangor Daily News.