Obamacare was sold to the American people as a plan which would offer multiple insurers and plan options but that’s not how it’s working out.
The New York Times reported:
Obamacare Options? In Many Parts of Country, Only One Insurer Will Remain
So much for choice. In many parts of the country, Obamacare customers will be down to one insurer when they go to sign up for coverage next year on the public exchanges.
A central tenet of the federal health law was to offer a range of affordable health plans through competition among private insurers. But a wave of insurer failures and the recent decision by several of the largest companies, including Aetna, to exit markets are leaving large portions of the country with functional monopolies for next year.
According to an analysis done for The Upshot by the McKinsey Center for U.S. Health System Reform, 17 percent of Americans eligible for an Affordable Care Act plan may have only one insurer to choose next year. The analysis shows that there are five entire states currently set to have one insurer, although our map also includes two more states because the plans for more carriers are not final. By comparison, only 2 percent of eligible customers last year had only one choice.
A similar analysis by Avalere Health, another consulting firm, also highlighted the increase in areas with only one insurance carrier.
The market is still in some flux. Final contracts between insurers and the federal government won’t be signed until late September. That means it is still possible that additional insurers will choose to enter new markets between now and then, and the competitive picture could improve. It is also possible that some carriers will decide to exit. It was just this week that Aetna surprised regulators and others with the news that it was leaving most of the markets where it offered policies on the exchange, leaving it in just four states.
If only someone had warned us.
Oh wait, they did. And they were called racists for doing so.