The Delaware Department of Insurance launched a section on its website for public comments with regard to the requested rate increase by Highmark Blue Cross Blue Shield of Delaware.

This increase request of 33.6 percent applies only to health insurance plans on the Affordable Care Act Exchange. This launch comes as the DOI requests an independent actuarial review of Highmark’s proposed rate increase. Under Delaware law, when a rate increase request is filed with the DOI, the commissioner must consider those review findings in addition to public comments before arriving at a decision on the proposed increase.

If enrollment remains constant from last year, about 27,000 consumers could be affected by this rate request. Consumers who wish to submit comments in response to Highmark’s proposed rate increase for Affordable Care Act plans may do so by visiting insurance.delaware.gov/public-comment.

Consumers may also submit their comments in writing to Delaware Department of Insurance, Attn: Rate Increases, 841 Silver Lake Blvd. Dover, DE 19904.

Consumers will have the opportunity to provide comments in person during public comment sessions that are scheduled for the following dates, times and locations:

— New Castle County: 6 to 8 p.m. July 31, Carvel State Building, 820 N. French St., Wilmington

— Kent County: 6 to 8 p.m. Aug. 2, Delaware Department of Insurance, 841 Silver Lake Blvd., Dover

— Sussex County: 6 to 8 p.m. Aug. 3, Delaware Technical Community College Owens Campus,

21179 College Drive, Georgetown

For more information, call 674-7310 or email consumer@state.de.us.