Federal officials have a secret list of 11 Obamacare health insurance co-ops they fear are on the verge of failure, but they refuse to disclose them to the public or to Congress, a Daily Caller News Foundation investigation has learned.
Just in the last three weeks, five of the original 24 Obamacare co-ops announced plans to close, bringing the total of failures to nine barely two years after their launch with $2 billion in start-up capital from the taxpayers under the Affordable Care Act.
Health cooperatives are collapsing at such a rapid clip that some co-ops and small insurers are forming a coalition to consider legal action to try to change health-law provisions they blame for their financial distress.
Colorado’s co-op and one in Oregon announced Friday that they were folding, joining six others that have already collapsed or said they will unwind operations. The eight co-ops have received nearly $900 million in federal funds that may not be paid back.
Oregon will become the eighth state to shut down a taxpayer-funded health insurance startup, the latest Obamacare co-op insurer to fold from financial troubles.
Health Republic Insurance, one of the state’s two co-ops, said Friday it will not offer plans in 2016. Also on Friday, Colorado’s co-op said that it would stop offering plans next year.
Colorado’s nonprofit co-op insurer announced Friday that it will not offer plans in 2016, the third co-op to do so in a week. The decision means that Colorado will be the seventh of 23 taxpayer-funded co-ops to shut down. About $2 billion in government funding has been doled out to the co-ops that opened to offer more competition in the Obamacare marketplaces.
A government watchdog overseeing the Department of Health and Human Services delivered the grim financial state of nearly all of the co-ops—that collectively received $2.4 billion—created under Obamacare several months ago.
Now, following the collapse of six of the 23 that launched in 2013, the co-ops, or consumer oriented and operated plans, face an uphill battle to solidify themselves as competitors in the health insurance market.
Kentucky’s health insurance co-operative joined the growing list of failed Obamacare co-operatives, announcing Wednesday it will cease operations by the end of the year.
Federal officials were so out of the loop about the failing state of the Kentucky Health co-operative last November they awarded it $20 million in additional “expansion funds” to allow it to sell health insurance to customers in nearby West Virginia.
Community Health Alliance, Tennessee’s health insurance co-op, will stop offering health insurance coverage in 2016, reports The Tennessean. The move will make nearly 27,000 individuals find insurance elsewhere. In January, the co-op froze enrollment. The organization will continue to pay out existing claims and slow down its operations, The Tennessean reports.
Colorado HealthOP is one of roughly 20 nationally that opened after Obamacare started. They were designed to shake up the traditional health insurance marketplaces, and provide an alternative. And they’ve done that. Co-op plans were often priced below their competitors and they gained a huge surge in customers. But with a lot of claims to pay that puts them on potentially shaky ground, said Scott Harrington.
Half of the Americans who remain uninsured several years into Obamacare are eligible for government assistance in buying coverage, a new survey shows.
In less than three weeks, the Obama administration will embark on the third enrollment period under the 2010 Affordable Care Act, where it faces the ongoing challenge of persuading those who have resisted obtaining health coverage to buy it. About 32 million people, or about 11 percent of the U.S. population, are still uninsured.
By liberal and media acclamation, ObamaCare is a glorious success, the political opposition is fading and the entitlement state has gained another permanent annex. The reality, for anyone who cares to look, is different and suggests that ObamaCare is far more vulnerable than this conventional wisdom.