Insurance premiums rise, even for doctor's group - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Insurance premiums rise, even for doctor's group

Posted: Updated:
  • More WALB News10 HeadlinesMore News HeadlinesMore>>

  • Bowl-A-Rama holds Back-to-School Bash

    Bowl-A-Rama holds Back-to-School Bash

    Friday, August 1 2014 11:19 PM EDT2014-08-02 03:19:59 GMT
    James Smith, studentJames Smith, student
    An Albany bowling alley is helping kids have a little fun before they go back to school. Bowl-A-Rama held its first Back-to-School Bash for High School Students in Dougherty, Lee, Mitchell, and Baker Counties. More >>
    An Albany bowling alley is helping kids have a little fun before they go back to school. Bowl-A-Rama held its first Back-to-School Bash for High School Students in Dougherty, Lee, Mitchell, and Baker Counties. More >>
  • Valdosta organization prepares for backpack giveaway

    Valdosta organization prepares for backpack giveaway

    Friday, August 1 2014 11:14 PM EDT2014-08-02 03:14:47 GMT
    Volunteers at Moody Air Force Base pre-packed more than 900 backpacks with school supplies on Friday.More >>
    Volunteers at Moody Air Force Base pre-packed more than 900 backpacks with school supplies on Friday.More >>
  • Sylvester residents gather for National Night Out

    Sylvester residents gather for National Night Out

    Friday, August 1 2014 11:11 PM EDT2014-08-02 03:11:03 GMT
    Scott Vandermolen, Florida residentScott Vandermolen, Florida resident
    A week after 8 teenagers were shot at a party in Sylvester people came together there Friday night to fight crime .A National Night Out celebration was held at Jeffords Park downtown. More >>
    A week after 8 teenagers were shot at a party in Sylvester people came together there Friday night to fight crime .A National Night Out celebration was held at Jeffords Park downtown. More >>

November 29, 2007

Albany-  An Albany doctors group may no longer be able to pay the full cost of health insurance for their employees, and they blame high prices at Phoebe Putney Hospital.

Annual insurance premiums for the 26 workers at Allergy and Asthma Clinics of Georgia will jump 30 percent. They say something must be done to lower the cost of health care in southwest Georgia.

The doctors at Allergy and Asthma Clinics of Georgia know a thing or two about rising health care costs, but even they were shocked to learn their own benefit premiums for 26 workers would increase 30 percent. They asked their insurance provider why?

"What's the cause for this increase, and the finger was pointed squarely at Phoebe Putney," said Alan Moree, Allergy and Asthma Clinics of Georgia Administrator.

Now they'll pay $6,600 per employee. While employee benefits are fully funded by the company that may soon change.

"We feel like we're caught in between. Our doctors are committed to providing that benefits for our employees, but the cost is becoming prohibitive at this point," said Moree.

They say a report released Wednesday by a group called Georgia Watch made them question if they're paying for Phoebe's pricing strategy and high salaries for executives.

"It just seems like we could do a better job in this community of trying to work together businesses and health care providers to bring down the cost of health care," said Moree.

They've talked with other small businesses experiencing similar problems and while they don't have a solution they say competition may help.

"To me, I'm a free market person, I think competition is good, and personally I would like to see changes in the certificate of need laws," said Moree.

Increases in the cost of drugs, supplies, and electricity, are enough to make the cost of doing business high, they say the last thing they needed was a hike in what they consider a valuable benefit for employees.

An independent study on south Georgia's health care prices is almost finished. The report commissioned by the city, county, and Department of Economic Development to look at south Georgia's high medical costs is due out next month.

Feedback: news@walb.com?subject=HighHealthCareCosts