Thursday, May 11, 2017

One Step Forward, Two Steps Back

BlueCross BlueShield of Tennessee is planning to restore individual coverage in Knoxville, after having withdrawn from offering "individual coverage under the health care exchange market in 2017 in Tennessee's three biggest markets."

Of course, we have no idea how much these plans will actually end up costing, nor for how long they'll continue to offer this coverage. Still, a little bit of good news for a change.

Which is offset by Aetna's announcement that "it will not be participating in any Obamacare exchanges in 2018." And who can blame them; they lost almost three-quarters of a billion dollars between 2016 and 2016, and are on track to drop another $200 million this year "despite a significant reduction in membership," according to company spokescritter T.J. Crawford.

Um, say that again?

"Despite a significant reduction in membership"

Um, TJ? Do you think that maybe, just maybe, that needs to be recast as "Because of a significant reduction in membership?" We call this adverse selection; that is, when rates continue to decrease by 3000% skyrocket, healthier people tend to drop off, while the sickest continue to cling bitterly to their coverage at pretty much any cost.

It's really not that complicated.
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