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Administration rejects health insurer's defense of huge rate increases

New York Times, February 12, 2010

While California insurance company Anthem Blue Cross said that its recently announced premium increases of up to 39% were driven by rising healthcare costs, HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius declared the explanation inadequate, the New York Times reports. "It remains difficult to understand how a company that made $2.7 billion in the last quarter of 2009 alone can justify massive increases that will leave consumers with nothing but bad options," she said. Anthem's rate increases have galvanized some Democrats in Washington who say they provide an example of why Congress needs to pass legislation that overhauls the healthcare system, the Times reports.