JUST IN: Major insurer exits Obamacare exchange

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Obamacare continues to implode right before our eyes. Another major insurance company has announced they are exiting the Obamacare exchange.

Anthem BlueCross BlueShield announced on Monday that it will completely exit Nevada’s Obamacare exchange next year, leaving very little doubt that the Affordable Care Act is not a sustainable program.

According to an announcement by Nevada Insurance Commissioner Barbara Richardson Monday, Anthem is abandoning its initial offer to provide plans in three counties while pulling out of 14 other counties. Instead, Anthem will pull out of Nevada entirely, citing the reason they made the decision to exit as a “volatile” individual market.

“[P]lanning 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 … including cost sharing reduction subsidies and the restoration of taxes on fully insured coverage,” Anthem said in a statement.

Despite Anthem’s exit, Richardson said, “We remain optimistic that there will be coverage for consumers on the exchange throughout the state.”

Nevada Gov. Brian Sandoval (R) also issued a statement claiming that Anthem’s decision to leave the healthcare exchange was “a surprise and abrupt.”

“This is a significant blow to the state’s individual market,” Sandoval said, adding the exit left him “frustrated and disappointed.”

According to the governor, residents in three counties can still choose between two providers next year.

The most recent Kaiser Family Foundation data indicates that Anthem’s decision won’t result in any new bare counties, but a total of 17 counties nationally are expected to not have a health plan available in the exchanges next year.

In Georgia, BlueCross BlueShield agreed to offer plans in 85 counties that would have otherwise had no insurer. But the major insurer pulled out of 74 other Georgia counties, as those residents had other coverage options.

BlueCross BlueShield blamed political uncertainty surrounding the fate of Obamacare in deciding to drop the additional counties. “The continued uncertainty makes it difficult for us to offer Individual health plans statewide,” it said in a statement.

Recent data from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services shows that 1,332 counties across the country will have only one insurer to choose from on the Obamacare Health Insurance Exchanges next year.

Republican lawmakers are blaming the failure of Obamacare as the sole reason as to why insurers are exiting the exchanges. To the contrary, Democrats say the Trump administration is creating the instability.

Meanwhile, federal data shows that some top name health insurance providers are seeking premium increases as high as 30% or more on 2018 Obamacare plans.

Unfortunately, a recent survey published by the Gallup-Sharecare Well-Being Index found that the uninsured rate among U.S. adults dropped by approximately 2 million people, with more people reporting being uninsured this year than last.

As President Trump continues to encourage the GOP to repeal ObamaCare, their efforts have stalled for now.

Retired Virgina attorney Bob Heghmann filed a lawsuit in U.S. District Court last week, accusing the Republican’s of fraud and racketeering. He says they raised millions of dollars in donations, knowing they wouldn’t be able to repeal Obamacare as promised.

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