Jeff Fusile | WABE 90.1 FM

Jeff Fusile

Andrew Harnik / Associated Press

Blue Cross Blue Shield of Georgia is proposing an average increase of 40 percent to insurance premiums on the individual marketplace next year through the Affordable Care Act. The proposed rate hikes come as Congress continues to debate health care.

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Georgia's largest health insurance company, Blue Cross Blue Shield of Georgia, has started a new rule:  it will deny coverage to individual policyholders for emergency room visits the company deems to be unnecessary.  

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The idea is to address the soaring costs that are racked up when patients go to the ER for problems that should be handled in a doctor's office or a clinic.