GHLIT rates rise nearly 10 percent

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Schaumburg, Ill. - Medical rates for the American Veterinary Medical Association's Group Health Life and Insurance Trust (GHLIT) climbed 9.6 percent during the last six-month time period.

SCHAUMBURG, ILL. — Medical rates for the American Veterinary Medical Association's Group Health Life and Insurance Trust (GHLIT) climbed 9.6 percent during the last six-month time period.

The increase, while low compared to industry averages, will pay to offset medical-care claims of $116,508,330 in 2006. The top five diagnoses: complications from surgical and medical care, general symptoms, joint disorders, back disorders and malignant neoplasm of lymphatic and hematopoietic tissue.

The breakdown comes from the Trust's annual statement, released last month. Insuring nearly 38 percent of all AVMA members, the Trust was established by the association in 1956 to provide group life, disability and medical insurance to veterinarians. GHLIT membership increased .3 percent since last year to total 33,204 participants in 2007.

Fiscal health

The Trust reports average treatment costs provided for the top 10 claimants in 2006 averaged $595,323 per member. The most expensive treatments were related to leukemia, cancer, grand mal seizures and a bone marrow transplant.

Although claims have exceeded premiums seven times in the past 10 years, officials call the financial status of the Trust "excellent," with administrative expenses at 9 percent, less than the industry's average.

The Trust's claim-stabilization reserve has increased by $2.7 million to reach $91 million, officials say.

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