Health insurer Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield says it will largely stop selling insurance plans in Wisconsin on the marketplaces set up through the Affordable Care Act next year, citing a volatile market for insurance plans that comply with the law.
Anthem will be the second large national insurance company to stop selling health plans on the state’s marketplaces. UnitedHealthcare pulled out last year.
About 14,000 people are covered by the Anthem health plans sold on Wisconsin’s marketplaces. That works out to less than 6% of the 242,863 people who were enrolled in health plans sold on the marketplaces as of Jan. 31. Anthem said its decision does not affect its health plans for employers, its Medicare Advantage plans or Medicaid plans.
It also will continue to renew its so-called transitional plans that were sold before March 2010 and December 2013. Those plans, which are not available to new customers, cover about 4,500 people in Wisconsin.
Anthem previously pulled out of the marketplaces for Milwaukee, Racine and Kenosha counties. But Molina Healthcare, Common Ground Healthcare Cooperative, Children’s Community Health Plan and Network Health sold plans in Milwaukee County this year.
Other health insurers selling marketplace plans in the state include Dean Health Plan, Unity Health Insurance, Security Health, Gundersen Health Plan and Aspirus Arise Health Plan of Wisconsin.
All of the insurers, though, have struggled.
“The Wisconsin individual market remains volatile, making planning and pricing for ACA-compliant health plans increasingly difficult,” Anthem said Wednesday in a statement.
Among the factors Anthem cited were a shrinking and deteriorating market and uncertainty at the federal level.