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WellPoint spent $1.3M on federal lobbying in 2nd quarter

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WellPoint Inc., the nation's largest health insurer based on membership, spent about $1.3 million lobbying the federal government in the second quarter mostly on the government's health care overhaul, which was approved last year that aims to eventually cover millions of uninsured people.

The Indianapolis-based insurer raised its spending on lobbying 17 percent compared to the $1.1 million it spent in last year's quarter, but lowered it 3 percent compared to this year's first quarter. WellPoint operates Blue Cross Blue Shield plans in 14 states and provides coverage for more than 34 million people.

WellPoint lobbied on issues tied to the overhaul's implementation and regulations for accountable care organizations, which are networks of hospitals, doctors, rehabilitation centers and other providers that coordinate a patient's care.

It lobbied on a new rule from the overhaul governing insurer medical-loss ratios, which measure the percentage of premiums an insurer spends on care and quality improvements. Starting this year, insurers must meet minimum medical-loss ratios or offer rebates to consumers.

The insurer also lobbied on rate reviews, taxes on the industry and exchanges, which will help people buy insurance.

Aside from the overhaul, WellPoint also lobbied on the Pharmacy Competition and Consumer Choice Act of 2011.

Besides Congress and the White House, the insurer lobbied the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, and the departments of Labor and Health and Human Services.

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  • Wellpoint
    Tim....you really said that? I own my own business that has been around for over 50 years and is a multi-million dollar business so you are preaching to the wrong choir about free market strategies. My FICA tax bill would probably put you in a fetal position and then add my pension expense? Fact is health rates are too high for my group's loss experience. Do you know what the means?
  • Red dog
    That is one of the benefits of living in a free market system - you have a choice. In fact if you are a bunch of health nuts try going to a self insured model , since you think everyone is getting rich off of you.
    • dmc
      dmc a don't worry who is going to pay for universal health care, it obviously won't be you. Go back to reading your Newsweek and watching your Chris Matthews.
    • Wellpoint
      DMC - we all can't be as well educated as you are. I'm in favor od the tea party, gun control and less govt control...gee that sounds like most Hoosier. Just a bunch of dumb hicks in your opinion.
    • Wellpoint
      Tracks with my goup rate increase of 25% in addition to last year's 25%. I've paid over $48,000 and when I checked with Wellpoint, the group had approx $18,000 in claims over past 2 years. That my friends is a gross profit of 62.5%. IF Wellpoint has to pay 80% of each dollar for claims, I'm confused as to why I am only costing them 37.5% and still getting stung with a hugh rate increase. Don't tell me it covers the statewide experience...our family members are marathon runners in excellent health. OBTW, I checked with ASSURANT HEALTH for a quote and they are going to same my about $10,000 this year. ______ you Wellpoint.
    • Sarcasm? Or Tea Party misinformation?
      I'm trying to determine if the two previous commenters were trying to be sarcastic, albeit without humor, or are merely repeating Tea Party misinformation. Anyone else?
    • Seems minimal
      For a company as large as Wellpoint that seems minimal to have people look out for their interests. Obama will spend 800 x this on a trip to India with the family, cooks, etc, etc. I would rather keep and pay for my private insurance, have fun with lines w/ Obamacare if you think it is so great.
    • Duh
      Why do you think it's called Obama Care?

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