The insurer announced that it will not participate in the state’s ACA marketplace next year.
One of the largest insurers in the United States, Anthem health insurance, announced its intention to exit the Ohio ACA exchange next year. While the company is large, very few people will be affected by the departure.
Only about 10,500 Ohioans have health plans with Anthem, residing in only one fifth of the state’s counties.
While the Anthem health insurance exit from the exchange is a small one when all is said and done, it was quickly snatched up by Republicans who are using it as further evidence of the “collapsing” insurance exchanges. President Trump, himself, said that it provided more proof that insurance companies are “fleeing and leaving” the Affordable Care Act’s marketplaces. Trump followed this up with a call for Congress to pass a bill to repeal the ACA health care law in coming months.
Ohio residents with Anthem health insurance coverage through the exchange will need to look elsewhere in 2018.
Republican senators have been working to try to come to an agreement regarding some central health care issues, particularly in the case of Medicaid. Senator John Barrasso (R-Wyoming) said they met with Vice President Mike Pence to discuss the subject. Changes have already been made to the bill that made it through the House.
The Senate is seeking “a smoother glide path, rather than an abrupt cutoff” of federal funding for Medicaid expansion in 31 states, he said. Senators have also voiced their worries over certain House bill provisions that would make it possible for states to obtain waivers from some of the federal insurance standards. These include the requirement for insurance companies not to force policyholders with pre-existing conditions to pay considerably more than their healthy counterparts.
So far, Senate Republicans haven’t yet come to an agreement regarding the House bill provisions that may be waved.
Currently, Congressional Republicans say it will cost billions to stabilize the ACA marketplaces over the coming decade. However, their design to stop marketplace withdrawals like Anthem health insurance in Ohio for 2018 is yet unclear.