Blue Shield of California proposes 59% premium rate hike - Jan. 7, 2011 One of California's largest health insurers - Blue Shield - announced plans to hike its premiums by as much as 59%. The jacked up premium rates are set to take effect on March 1, pending review from state insurance regulators. The move impacts 193,000 individual Blue Shield policy holders. The company, a member of the Blue Cross Blue Shield Association with 3.3 million members, which announced the move late Thursday, stressed that its decision has "almost nothing to do with the federal health reform law" and that ultimately the law will help slow down health care costs. hahaha premium increases of 59% and they specifically state that its not because of the health care law. lets hear the GOP defend this one..