In their press release, Anthem noted,
“Today, planning and pricing for ACA-compliant health plans has become increasingly difficult due to a shrinking and deteriorating Individual market, as well as continual changes and uncertainty in federal operations, rules and guidance, including cost sharing reduction subsidies and the restoration of taxes on fully insured coverage. As a result, the continued uncertainty makes it difficult for us to offer Individual health plans statewide in Virginia.” Anthem will “reduce its plan offering and will only offer off-exchange plans in Washington and Scott Counties and the city of Bristol, VA.”
According to the Richmond Times-Dispatch, the move would be significant: “More than 206,000 Virginians could lose their individual health insurance policies with the sudden withdrawal of Anthem Blue Cross Blue Shield in Virginia, the state’s largest insurer, from the federal exchange and individual market in 2018.” Anthem will still employer-based plans, as well as Medicare and Medicaid plans.
The move leaves just five insurers in Virginia — Optima, Kaiser, Piedmont, Cigna, and CareFirst. Some localities will be left with just one insurer choice next year. This move by Anthem is a big deal, and yet another major failure of the poor structuring of the entire Obamacare apparatus. Americans deserve better.