Monday, September 18, 2017

All U.S. counties again have Obamacare plans after Anthem steps in to serve Va. counties left bare

Health insurer Anthem Inc. announced Sept. 15 that it will sell individual Obamacare plans next year in the parts of Virginia that were in danger of having no such coverage. So, as of now, no U.S. counties lack an individual Obamacare insurer, though an increasing number will have just one when government marketplaces open enrollment Nov. 1.

"Last week, Virginia officials said there were 48 counties and 15 cities in that state expected to be bare as a result of Optima Health's decision not to expand its footprint as much as it had earlier expected,"  Dan Mangan reports for CNBC. "Anthem had announced in August that it would stop selling its Blue Cross Blue Shield Obamacare plans in all of Virginia. Two other large insurers, Aetna and UnitedHealthcare, previously said they would exit the Obamacare market there."
Bloomberg's county-by-county map shows number of marketplace insurers as of Sept. 18. Click here for the interactive map; click on the image for a larger version.
The marketplace has been in frequent flux as insurers decide whether, or to what extent, to participate in the marketplaces created under the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act. Insurers must submit final plans to the federal government by the end of September. Anthem is significantly scaling back its ACA plans in nine of the 14 states where it currently sells individual marketplace plans. A few weeks ago, the insurer announced it would cut in half the number of Kentucky counties in which it would offer such plans.

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