CMS: 47 counties to have no insurer selling ACA exchange plans in 2018

Across Ohio, Missouri and Washington state, CMS estimates 47 counties — or about 35,000 Americans — will lack an insurer selling on-exchange individual ACA health plans for 2018.

The county-by-county analysis released June 13 is based on exchange participation announcements made by payers as of June 9. CMS Administrator Seema Verma pointed to the report as "another failing report card for the exchanges" and said CMS is "working with state departments of insurance and issuers to find ways to provide relief and help restore access to healthcare plans."

While insurers exiting the exchanges have largely attributed their decision to million dollar losses on their individual exchange businesses, some insurers have also pointed to uncertainties surrounding the stability of the individual market.

Danette Wilson, president and CEO of Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Kansas City (Mo.), said "the uncertain direction of this market is a barrier to our continued participation," and affected its decision to exit ACA exchanges in Missouri and Kansas for 2018.

In addition to the counties void of ACA exchange insurers, CMS predicted up to 1,200 counties, or 2.4 million Americans, may have one insurer offering an ACA health plan for 2018. 

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