Insured Americans would have received $2 billion in insurance rebates or lower premiums in 2011 if a key consumer protection included in the health care reform law had been instituted one year earlier, according to a new report from The Commonwealth Fund.
predicts the benefits Americans will see when insurers begin paying mandatory rebates later this year as part of the medical loss ratio provision. Insurers will be required to spend a minimum of 80 percent of premiums on medical costs or provide the difference in rebates to customers.
The rough estimates offer a “prediction of the impact the MLR rules
may have on their first year of application — either by way of requiring rebates or by motivating insurers to reduce rates in order to avoid rebates," according to the study.
Approximately $1 billion in rebates would have been awarded to 5.3 million policyholders in the U.S. last year, while an additional 10 million people with employer-sponsored coverage would have split another $1 billion, the study said.