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Affordable Care Act Providing Refunds to Floridians

July 17th, 2012 by Mike Vasilinda

One and a quarter million Floridians will share in more than 123 million dollars health insurers are being forced to return to policy holders because the companies were not spending enough on caring for patients. The refunds are a result of the national health care act that sets limits on how much profit health insurers can earn. As Mike Vasilinda tells us, Florida initially sought to let the companies keep more profit.

The Affordable Care act sets what is called a Medical Loss Ratio. It requires health insurers in Florida to spend at least 80 cents of every dollar they take in providing care.

So letters like this one are on their way to more than a million consumers and businesses telling them they are getting a refund or a rebate. 18 companies in Florida will return more than 123 million. Single families can expect an average 240 dollar refund; small business, 190 dollars per insured employee; and large group companies will see an average of 94 dollars for everyone they cover.

Activist Barbara Devane, who demonstrated in favor of the health care act, says the refunds are proof the law is working.

“Well, I’m just very happy that small businesses are reaping the rewards of the Affordable Care Act,” Devane said.

The state initially asked for a waver to this 80 percent requirement, asking instead that insurers be required to spend only 68 cents of every dollar providing care.

The request was denied in December of last year.

Governor Rick Scott told Fox News the state would continue to block the creation of health exchanges in Florida.

“If you care about patients, this is devastating for you,” Scott said.

But Devane says the savings could be even greater if the Governor would change his mind.

“When the exchanges are set up, people’s rates will go down,” Devane said.

Some checks are already in the mail.

In some cases, insurers will apply a rebate to premium charges, which could take place as early as August.

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