Largest health insurer in US drops out of almost all Obamacare exchanges
United Health, the nation's largest health insurer, announced that they will be dropping out of all but "a handful" of state exchanges, citing huge losses.
The moves by United, the nation’s largest health insurer, have drawn attention for what they could indicate about the sustainability of ObamaCare as whole.
But as the Obama administration has pointed out, United is actually a fairly small player on the ObamaCare marketplaces, with about 6 percent of enrollees. It also often was not priced competitively.
Still, United is far from alone among insurers in having concerns about financial losses in the ObamaCare marketplaces.
Some insurers that play a larger role in the program, such as Blue Cross Blue Shield plans in some states, have also raised the prospect of dropping off the marketplaces.
Significant premium increases are widely expected for next year as insurers try to stop their losses, though the impact for consumers is usually cushioned by ObamaCare’s tax credits.
The administration says it expects that insurers will both come and go as the new market set up by the law develops, but that the marketplace will continue to succeed.
“The Marketplace is a reliable source of coverage for millions of Americans with a robust number of plan choices,” Department of Health and Human Services spokesman Ben Wakana said in a statement. “We have full confidence, based on data, that the Marketplaces will continue to thrive for years ahead.”
Liar. Last year, I had nine bronze plan choices on the Illinois exchange. This year, it was four. And the plan I had last year was unceremoniously dropped. This year, I am paying $80 more for less coverage and a $2,000 higher deductible.
I know I'm not alone, because the anecdotal evidence is overwhelming. Health insurance companies are offering fewer, more expensive plans in a desperate effort to recoup losses incurred because the risk pool is older and sicker than they were promised.
I don't feel sorry for them at all. They bought this pig in a poke. Now let them choke on it.