Hearing Scheduled for Monday October 3, 2005

In accordance with the authority granted to the Commissioner of Insurance in Chapter 176K of the Massachusetts General Laws, the Division of Insurance will hold a hearing at 10:00 a.m. on October 3, 2005, at its offices at One South Station, Boston, MA, to consider the request of BlueCrossBlueShield of Massachusetts ("BCBS") for approval of proposed Medicare Supplement Insurance rates for its Medex Gold, Medex Silver, Medex Bronze, Medex Standard, Medex Basic, Medex Core, and Medex Core Plus Rider policy forms. BCBS seeks the following rate increases: a 17.9 percent increase for Medex Gold; an 8.9 percent increase for Medex Silver; a 7.8 percent increase for Medex Bronze; a 13.0 percent increase for Medex Standard; a 13.0 percent increase for Medex Basic; a 4.6 percent increase for Medex Core and a 2.5 percent decrease for Medex Core Plus Rider. Furthermore, it proposes to offer an option to continue enrollment in the Medex Gold, Medex Silver, Medex Standard, Medex Basic, and the Medex Core Plus Rider benefit plans to members who enroll in the Medicare Part D plan, except that coverage of prescription drugs will be eliminated for these members and premiums for the plans will be reduced accordingly. The hearing shall also consider such other related matters as are set forth in the filings relating to these policy forms.

The purpose of this hearing will be to afford all interested parties an opportunity to provide oral and written testimony relating to the proposed rates so that the Commissioner may determine whether the benefits provided are unreasonable in relation to the rates charged; whether the rates are excessive, inadequate or unfairly discriminatory; and whether the company employs utilization review programs and other techniques acceptable to the Commissioner that have had or are expected to have a demonstrated impact on the prevention of reimbursement by the company for services that are not medically necessary.

This proceeding is designated as Docket R2005-13 and shall be conducted pursuant to 211 CMR 121.00, et seq. All papers relating to this proceeding shall refer to Docket No. R2005-13 and shall be addressed to the Division of Insurance, Docket Clerk, Hearings and Appeals, One South Station, Boston, MA 02110-2208. Persons, other than statutory intervenors, who wish to intervene in this proceeding shall file with the Division a request for leave to intervene in accordance with 211 CMR 121.16 no later than September 16, 2005. Persons who wish to present unsworn oral or written statements at the hearing should submit a request to do so no later than September 29, 2005; those who do not so notify the Division will be heard after those who do notify the Division. A prehearing and technical conference will take place on October 3, 2005, immediately following the public comment. All intervenors must attend.

The proposed rates and supporting documentation filed by the company may be inspected in the offices of the Division during normal business hours.

September 7, 2005

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Julianne M. Bowler
Commissioner of Insurance