Aetna (NYSE:AET), the nation’s third largest insurer, announced late Wednesday that it is leaving all ObamaCare exchanges next year. Last year, the company decided it would severely reduced its participation from 15 states to just 4 in 2017. In April, they pulled out of Virginia and last week, Iowa.
“At this time [we] have completely exited the exchanges,” Aetna said in a statement.
Health and Human Services (HHS) Secretary Tom Price said the development “adds to the mountain of evidence that Obamacare has failed the American people.”
“Aetna’s decision to completely withdraw from the ObamaCare exchanges adds to the mountain of evidence that ObamaCare has failed the American people,” Secretary Price said in a statement late Wednesday. “Repealing and replacing it with patient-centered solutions that stabilize the marketplace to bring down costs and increase choices is the only solution.”
Insurers have been opting out of ObamaCare exchanges to the point citizens in several states have little to no choices left in individual insurance markets. Medica recently indicated they would follow Aetna out of Iowa, leaving more than 70,000 Iowans who buy their own coverage without any options for 2018.
“Without swift action by the state or Congress to provide stability to Iowa’s individual insurance market, Medica will not be able to serve the citizens of Iowa in the manner and breadth that we do today,” the company’s statement said.
The Republican-controlled House of Representatives passed the American Health Care Act (AHCA) earlier this month, but “swift action” is not expected in the Senate where the GOP has a smaller majority.
“Our individual Commercial products lost nearly $700 million between 2014 and 2016, and are projected to lose more than $200 million in 2017 despite a significant reduction in membership,” Aetna added. “Those losses are the result of marketplace structural issues that have led to co-op failures and carrier exits, and subsequent risk pool deterioration.”