Aetna to Drop Out of California's Individual Insurance Market

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Health insurer Aetna announced it will drop out of California's individual customer market at the end of this year as the plans offered on the state health insurance exchange take effect, according to a report by the Wall Street Journal.

 

Aetna, along with UnitedHealth Group and Cigna, did not submit plans to regulators to approve for sale on the exchange for next year. Aetna, which currently has about 49,000 California policyholders, used to have many more in 2011, but was still just the fourth-largest insurer of individuals in California with 5.2 percent of the market.

 

Industry experts have speculated that large health insurers have begun and will continue pulling out of markets where they have little command in order to gauge the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act's impact in its first year of full implementation.

 

Aetna will continue selling employer health plans and Medicare supplemental insurance in California next year, according to the report, but did not specify why it had decided to pull out of the individual consumer market.

 

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