A year ago, many insurers and Web-based health insurance brokers were still talking fondly about their newborn efforts to sell individual health coverage that complied with the new Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA) underwriting restrictions and benefits mandates.
This year, companies are talking more about problems with operations involving PPACA-compliant individual health coverage.
The list of companies that have announced major strategy changes as a result of the problems includes Highmark, a major Pittsburgh-based carrier; Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Illinois, a unit of Health Care Service Corp.; and eHealth Inc., the parent of eHealthInsurance.com, one of the pioneers in efforts to create an “Amazon.com of health insurance.”
For a look at what those companies are saying, read on.
Highmark has told doctors in at least some of its Pennsylvania provider networks that it will cope with big losses on 2015 PPACA exchange coverage by cutting payments to doctors 4.5 percent, effective April 1, according to an online notice summarized by the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review.
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2. Illinois Blue
Illinois Blue has joined the long list of major carriers that says it will stop paying commissions on sales of special enrollment period (SEP) business.
The Illinois Blue SEP commission cut is effective for coverage that starts April 1, according to a notice sent to producers.
The decision affects consumers under 65 who are applying for new medical policies outside the regular PPACA open enrollment period for 2016, which ended Jan. 31.
The change does not affect renewal policies, sales of dental insurance or other ancillary products, or sales of group or Medicare-related products, Illinois Blue says.