Humana leaving Utah health insurance marketplace

Humana's exit follows the collapse of Arches Health Plan last year. Utah providers still are waiting for about $32 million in outstanding claims, said Steve Gooch, Utah Insurance Department spokesman.

The Affordable Care Act created online insurance marketplaces that allow consumers to find the best plan to fit their needs by comparing prices and networks. They also can qualify for federal tax credits that reduce the overall cost of coverage.

Right now, Humana covers fewer than 10,000 of the about 164,000 Utahns who purchased insurance on the exchange.

In comparison, Stevenson said, SelectHealth covered upward of 100,000.

Additionally, Gooch said, Humana was available only in Salt Lake and Davis counties. Individuals in those two counties now will be down to three companies to choose from, but Gooch said Humana's withdrawal will not impact the 20 counties that already had just one carrier option.

Renneke said Humana already notified its Utah members that their "individual major medical insurance plans" won't be available starting Jan. 1.

"Humana will continue to work closely with the current and future administrations, as

well as state governments, to address the persistent challenges facing the individual insurance market and develop solutions that encourage all individuals to obtain and maintain coverage," Renneke said. "In that way, people without access to employer and government-provided coverage will have sustainable access to meaningful coverage options in the future."

The three remaining companies on the exchange all have filed intended rate increases with the department: SelectHealth at 30.1 percent, University of Utah at 4.5 percent and Molina at 33.8 percent. The department will review, and potentially approve, those rate increases in the coming months.

On Wednesday, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services released a report stating that about 80 percent of Utahns who purchase insurance on could get a plan that costs less than $75 per month next year — even if all marketplace health insurance premium rates experience a double-digit increase.

A Molina representative said Thursday the company is expanding into Box Elder County in 2017. University of Utah Health Plans did not respond to a request for comment. Twitter @alexdstuckey

Category: Insurance plans

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