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State insurance experts see flaw in Obama's plan to curb health premiums

New York Times, March 9, 2010

President Obama's drive to rein in health costs contains a proposal for federal review and regulation of health insurance premiums, with a new agency empowered to block excessive rate increases. But state officials are leery of the proposal, ad experts see a serious potential problem: Federal officials will focus on holding down premiums while state officials focus on the solvency of insurers, the ultimate consumer protection. And economists say that holding down premiums does not necessarily hold down the cost of care, which reflects the prices charged by doctors and hospitals and the volume of services, the New York Times reports.