Anthem Blue Cross Bows Out of the Small Business Exchange

Anthem Blue Cross is withdrawing its bid to participate in the small business exchange. California insurance commissioner, Dave Jones had recommended that the company be excluded due to rate increases on California small business plans. Anthem remains in small group market outside the Exchange — giving businesses options and insurance market competition

Jones said, “Last month I recommended that Anthem Blue Cross of California be excluded from California’s small business health insurance exchange because of its pattern of excessive and unjustified rate increases on California small businesses. This recommendation was made pursuant to The Affordable Care Act, which directs insurance commissioners to determine if a pattern of excessive or unjustified rate increases exists such that a health insurer should be denied access to the state health insurance exchange.”

Unlike United Healthcare and Aetna, which pulled out of California’s individual health insurance market entirely, Anthem will continue selling in the small group health insurance market in California outside the exchange, so there is no effect on choice or competition in the small group market overall. It does mean that Anthem will not have access to federal tax credit and taxpayer subsidized business in the small group market exchange.

Last Updated 11/25/2020

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