But some producers, like other people, might want to come up with at least a hazy idea of how the individual major medical coverage market and related markets might work in 2018, given all of the conflict and confusion inside the federal government.
Consumers and employers will be desperate to hear your ideas about how health insurance will really work. The longer the uncertainty persists, the more they will look to you for ideas about what all that talk in Washington means for their ability to pay for their future medical care.
Critics of the Affordable Care Act system dubbed it “ObamaCare,” even though, of course, it was former Senate Democratic Leader Harry Reid who disappeared into an office and came out with the tower of paper that changed the U.S. health finance system.
Some have dubbed the current effort to repeal or change the Affordable Care Act system “TrumpCare.”
Here are five possible 2018 individual health insurance market NewCare system scenarios.
Officials in the Trump administration could decide, on the other hand, that they are so angry about the outcome of efforts to change the current system, and so convinced of the need to shock Democrats into getting serious about the need to make changes, that they will use every tool they have to cripple the system.
If so, and if the courts and Congress let administration do that, then the individual market could freeze, with insurers unable to issue any kind of viable, well-understood individual major medical coverage, either inside or outside the Affordable Care Act exchange system.
The disruption in the individual major medical market could be so severe that it could lead to explosive growth and unexpected underwriting problems and claim problems in adjacent markets, such as the short-term health insurance market and the hospital indemnity insurance markets, and force issuers of this products to throw up emergency barriers to keep the walking dead from slipping in.
In that scenario, agents and brokers may just have to turn away from the major medical insurance and focus on selling products in markets that still work.
Seema Verma, the new administrator of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, has openly supported Republican efforts to dismantle the current Affordable Care Act system, but she also ran the consulting firm that trained Indiana’s HealthCare.gov navigators.
She has designed state Medicaid health reimbursement arrangement programs. The program in Indiana seems to have worked. The program in Iowa seems to have worked less well. But, if anyone has concrete, clear-eyed ideas about how to make the current Affordable Care Act System keep staggering forward, it might be Verma.
Maybe the Trump administration will give her the freedom to do the best job she can at keeping the system going, with the resources she has, and it will work pretty well. In that system, agents and brokers may just have to keep abreast of the usual changes in programs, products and policies.