In Minnesota, BCBS to ditch individual health plans

Next year, Blue Cross Blue Shield of Minnesota will stop offering broad-reaching and flexible individual health plans, affecting some 103,000 people, the Star Tribune reported.

BCBS is the state's largest insurer and sold 43 percent of individual plans on Minnesota's MNsure insurance exchange last year. However, this year enrollment for BCBS individual plans on MNsure dropped about 21 percent.

BCBS likewise lost $265 million on individual health plans in 2015, amounting to more than $500 million in losses over the past three years, the Star Tribune reported. BCBS said the losses are a result of medical care claims exceeding premium revenues.

Michael Guyette, CEO of BCBS of Minnesota, told the Star Tribune the "way that we were in the market was just not sustainable right now given all the instability, the volatility and all the change that continues to happen in the individual marketplace both on and off the exchange."

The payer's subsidiary, Blue Plus, will remain on Minnesota's individual market. It has about 13,000 members.

BCBS said it will notify members individually and help affected members transition to alternative plans, according to Kaiser Health News

This year, BCBS increased its premiums on individual polices by 49 percent, according to the Star Tribune.

© Copyright ASC COMMUNICATIONS 2021. Interested in LINKING to or REPRINTING this content? View our policies by clicking here.