The health insurer is in talks with officials in some states ahead of deadlines later this month to decide whether to sell coverage in 2018, Chief Executive Officer Joseph Swedish said on Tuesday. The company has announced partial or full withdrawals from nine of the 14 states where it offered ACA public exchange plans this year.
“There are still some remaining states that we are in negotiation with, both the regulators as well as the legislative arena, to position ourselves appropriately,” Swedish told investors at the Morgan Stanley Global Healthcare Conference in New York. “There are due dates that are still in play with respect to being able to make an announcement, so we’re going to reserve any further statement about whether we’re in our out of various states until those due dates pass.”
The insurer is considering its plans for next year as senators weigh making changes to the Affordable Care Act, with some seeking small fixes to the law while others push for more far-reaching alterations. Efforts to overhaul the Affordable Care Act failed over the summer.
Anthem had about 1.5 million customers in fully ACA-compliant health plans as of June 30, including about 1 million who signed up through the health law’s exchanges. The stock fell 3.4% to $189.24 on Tuesday in New York, the biggest decline in 10 months.
Swedish didn’t say specifically which states Anthem might retreat from.
Of the five states where Anthem hasn’t said it plans to pull back, the insurer has said it will continue to sell Obamacare coverage in three — Colorado, New Hampshire and New York.
In two other states, the picture is unclear. The company previously told regulators in Maine it would quit that state’s exchange if subsidies for low-income consumers aren’t funded. In Connecticut, insurers have until Sept. 15 to decide whether to participate.
Eric Weinstein, director of legislative affairs at Connecticut’s insurance regulator, referred to the state’s Sept. 15 deadline and didn’t answer questions about Anthem. Maine didn’t respond to a request for comment.
In Washington, senators are holding two hearings on Tuesday about changing the Affordable Care Act.