by Christopher Freeburn | August 30, 2013 11:47 am
A major insurance provider is declining to participate in one of the largest state health insurance exchanges mandated by President Barack Obama’s Affordable Care Act.
Aetna (AET), the third-biggest health insurer in the country, says that it will not take part in New York state’s health insurance exchange. The company has withdrawn from health care exchanges in five states in recent months and is still determining which state health exchanges it ultimately with participate in, Reuters noted.
Despite delays getting insurer agreements in place, state health exchanges remain scheduled to launch on October 1 and are expected to provide health insurance coverage to 7 million currently-uninsured Americans in their first year of operation.
However, the health care law — dubbed Obamacare — has been strongly criticized by Republicans and is facing a variety of delays. Recently, the Obama administration delayed implementation of the law’s requirements for business until 2015.
Other leading health insurance providers, including UnitedHealth Group (UNH) and WellPoint (WLP), have made only limited commitments to the new exchanges.
Aetna’s CEO Mark Bertolini told participants on a conference call earlier this year that the company would take “a prudent risk-based approach to both our overall exposure and exposure within a given marketplace.” In the following weeks, Aetna pulled out of planned health exchanges in Ohio, Georgia, Maryland and its home state of Connecticut. It has applied to participate in exchanges in Virginia, Florida, Washington D.C. and Arizona.
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