No insurance companies will pull out of Colorado health exchange in 2018, state says

No insurance companies will pull out of Colorado health exchange in 2018, state says
Posted at 5:03 PM, Jun 21, 2017
and last updated 2017-06-21 19:06:48-04

DENVER – All of the insurance companies operating on Colorado’s health exchange will be back next year, quelling fears that 14 western Colorado counties would be left without insurers and that market competition would be further stymied in the state.

“The carriers that offered plans on the exchange this year filed plans to do so next year,” Rebecca Laurie, communications director for the Colorado Department of Regulatory Agencies confirmed to Denver7 Wednesday.

Monday was the deadline for the insurance companies to file their proposed individual and small group plan rates and premiums with the state Division of Insurance.

The Denver Post was the first to report that Anthem, which was the only company operating on the exchange on Colorado’s Western Slope, would remain in the exchange.

And on Wednesday, The Post reported that Colorado Insurance Commissioner Marguerite Salazar said nine companies filed plans by Monday’s deadline, including the seven companies that offered plans this year through Connect for Health Colorado, the state health exchange.

“For today, it’s business as usual,” she told The Post.

The Post also reported that the insurance commissioner will let insurers file an additional rate set next month if the Trump administration and Congress cut subsidy payments to help people buy insurance on the state and national markets in their new health care bill.

But the exact rates the companies requested won’t be public until July 14, when the Division of Insurance releases the proposals. The Post reported that premiums are again expected to rise across the state.

The public will be able to comment on the proposals through Aug. 4, and the state will release the final, approved plans and premiums for next year sometime later this summer or during the fall.

Open enrollment on Connect for Health Colorado for 2018 will begin again Nov. 1. 

This year, around 92,000 Coloradans had to change their plans after four different carriers either pulled out of or tailored the number of plans they were offering on the state exchange.

The news comes amid a secretive push by the Senate to craft another version of the House-passed American Health Care Act, which Republicans have put together to try and fulfill their campaign promises they'd "repeal and replace" the Affordable Care Act. The Associated Press has obtained some details of the bill a day ahead of its release.