The difficulty of legislating premium increases

The idea of implementing legislative controls of healthcare premium increases has been part of the reform bills for some time, but the idea has become more prominent in recent weeks. While it is tempting to look only at premium numbers when trying to control costs, there are actually a number of underlying factors: unit cost changes, medical inflation, utilization changes, member behavior, plan changes, premium “true-up,” and various leveraging.

This dynamic is discussed in a new briefing paper by Jon Shreve.