Sunday, October 20, 2013

Half Of States Will See Material Decline In Health Insurer Competition On Exchanges: Third Of Current State Health Insurers Opted Out Of Exchanges: Low Competition Leads to High Future Rate Increases

From USA Today, "Big insurers avoid many state health exchanges" by Jayne O'Donnell and Annika McGinnis:
So few insurers offer plans on some of the new government health insurance exchanges that consumers in those states may pay too much or face large rate increases later, insurance experts say.
About a third of insurance companies opted out of participating in the exchanges in states where they were already doing business, according to a recent report by McKinsey & Co. About half of states — which include about a third of the non-elderly insured population — will see a "material decline" in competitors, says McKinsey, while the other half of states will have about the same or more insurance choices on the exchanges.

"When there are too few carriers, down the road there will be issues with rate increases that make plans unaffordable for average Americans even with rate subsidies," says Bryce Williams, managing director of Towers Watson Exchange Solutions, which operates private insurance exchanges for companies. "We need competitive insurance markets in all states (and) multiple carriers competing hard."

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