AZ Health Insurance Rate Requests As High As 123%

Newly released health insurance rate requests for the Obamacare exchanges by the Arizona Department of Insurance, show insurers are requesting premium rate increases as high as 123% in Arizona as a result of financial losses and upheaval in the marketplace.

Nearly 180,000 Arizonans are enrolled in Obamacare plans.

Aetna is now requesting an average increase of 86%; Health Net of Arizona has jumped to 48%; and Phoenix Health’s request is 123%.

Obamacare requires states to provide information about “threshold” (10% or greater) rate increase filings, and to provide a way for the public to comment on requested threshold rate increases.

The effective date is January 1, 2017.

According to CNN Money, Aetna (AET) said last week that it is “canceling plans to expand into more states next year and will reassess its involvement in the 15 states where it currently offers coverage on the individual exchanges. It expects to lose $300 million (pre-tax) on its Obamacare business this year…The performance of Aetna’s Obamacare business is deteriorating as policyholders seek more care than expected, the company said. Pharmacy costs are a particular problem. Aetna had 838,000 exchange customers at the end of June.”

“While we are pleased with our overall results, in light of updated 2016 projections for our individual products and the significant structural challenges facing the public exchanges, we intend to withdraw all of our 2017 public exchange expansion plans, and are undertaking a complete evaluation of future participation in our current 15-state footprint,” said Mark T. Bertolini, Aetna chairman and CEO in a press release dated August 2.

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