States Scurrying To Induce Insurers To Stay on the ACA Exchanges

Some states have established programs, mostly dependent on reinsurance, in an effort to make Obamacare more palatable for already skittish insurance plans, the Wall Street Journal reports. They want to help insurers cover the sicker beneficiaries, which insurers say have forced them to hike premiums or leave the health exchanges altogether. Health plans welcome the chance to unload some of the risk (and associated costs) involved in providing coverage. The ACA mandates that insurers cannot charge sick patients more or refuse them coverage due to preexisting conditions.

Meanwhile, the young invincibles aren’t signing up to help alleviate the costs of such coverage. The states’ actions come as more health plans exit markets. Those who are staying, so far, make no promises. Many say that they could very well exit some ACA state exchanges. Some states are looking at reinsurance programs that are, in effect, high-risk pools, the WSJ reports.

Julie Mix McPeak, Tennessee’s insurance regulator, has been meeting with insurers to try and reach some sort of accommodation. She tells the WSJ: “The message I’m conveying is, ‘We’ll do whatever we can to make this area attractive to you on the individual exchange market.’”

Source: Wall Street Journal