State Insurance Superintendent John Franchini has approved a double-digit rate increase for Blue Cross and Blue Shield of New Mexico.
The rate increase will average 21 percent and affects about 40,000 people.
The state regulator on Wednesday affirmed the settlement of a rate case that had been reached last year by Blue Cross and Blue Shield, the Insurance Division of the Public Regulation Commission and the attorney general’s office. However, public criticisms of the settlement forced its reconsideration.
Several PRC members issued statements objecting to the rate increase but said they had no power to overturn the superintendent’s decision.
Commission members and Franchini urged Gov. Susana Martinez to sign pending legislation to strengthen regulatory review of health insurance premium increases.