BCBS of Tennessee stops individual grandfathered plans

Tennesseans who purchased individual BlueCross BlueShield health insurance plans before the Affordable Care Act was passed have to buy new plans for 2016, according to The Tennessean.

Approximately 24,000 individuals are covered under about 90 grandfathered plans, according to BCBS of Tennessee spokeswoman Mary Danielson. However, the policy change doesn't affect the 321 groups that have grandfathered plans.

"We made the decision not to extend these grandfathered plans because it is very difficult and inefficient to support essentially two individual markets under different sets of coverage requirements," said Ms. Danielson.

BCBS of Tennessee also ended its transitional individual plans, called grandmothered plans, as of Sept. 30. Approximately 170,000 people were covered under grandmothered plans from various insurers in 2015.

The changes mean more Tennesseans will be buying on the federally run exchange or checking their Medicaid eligibility. Open enrollment starts Nov. 1, but those coming out of a grandfathered plan are granted an extended enrollment period that runs through February.

More articles on payer issues:
Health insurers in the news: Week in review Oct. 2-8
Study: Nearly half of HealthCare.gov plans don't cover out-of-network costs
BCBS of Texas drops individual PPO plans

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