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Health Insurance Premiums Continue To Grow
Health insurance premiums continued to grow in 2011 but at slower rates than in recent years, according to the Department of Consumer and Business Services annual report on Health Insurance in Oregon. The 2012 report describes how health insurance is regulated in Oregon and provides detailed information on how Oregons seven largest insurers are faring financially. Many insurers reported lower-than-expected medical claims in 2011. They also showed slowing growth in health insurance rates in the individual and businesses that range from 2 to 50 employees. The average annual rate increase in the small group market was 6.6 percent, down from nearly 11.7 percent in the previous year. As of mid-2011, a total of 89 cents of every premium dollar went to pay medical claims. Another nine cents paid insurance company operating costs and the remaining two cents was profit, or net underwriting gain.