Blue Cross raising price of NC individual policies

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CHAPEL HILL, N.C. (AP) — North Carolina's largest health insurer plans to raise prices next year on individuals paying for their own coverage by an average of 10 percent, which would be the biggest increase in three years.

Blue Cross and Blue Shield of North Carolina said Friday it is asking state insurance regulators for permission to raise rates next year on 365,000 of its 3.6 million customers who buy their own health insurance. Rates individual coverage rose this year by an average of 5 percent.

Blue Cross is the dominant company providing health insurance to individuals, with more than 90 percent of the market.

The company said while some individuals will see double-digit premium increases, about 60 percent will see costs rise by less than 10 percent. About 4,000 customers would see rate decreases.

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