MD insurance commissioner seeks CareFirst audit

For some time now, critics in Maryland and Washington, D.C. have argued that local health plan CareFirst BlueCross BlueShield was maintaining too large a reserve to fit its non-profit mission. Now, it looks like Maryland's insurance commissioner has come to sympathize with CareFirst's detractors.

Late last year, the insurance commissioner set plans to get an independent audit of CareFirst's reserves. Commissioner Ralph Tyler will request proposals from outside organizations to conduct an audit of the reserves starting in early 2009. 

According to its most recent filing with the National Association of Insurance Commissioners, Owings Mills, MD-based CareFirst had almost $1.7 billion in reserve. That hasn't kept the plan from lowering reimbursement to some physicians, a fact that certainly hasn't helped the political situation much.

To learn more about the audit:
- read this AMNews piece

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