Aetna to Exit Most Obamacare Exchanges for 2017

What's Hot

How to Cut the Cable TV Cord in 2017Family

8 Major Freebies and Discounts You Get With Amazon PrimeSave

8 Creative Ways to Clear ClutterAround The House

Study: People Who Curse Are More HonestFamily

This Free Software Brings Old Laptops Back to LifeMore

Pay $2 and Get Unlimited Wendy’s Frosty Treats in 2017Family

The 3 Golden Rules of Lending to Friends and FamilyBorrow

6 Reasons Why Savers Are Sexier Than SpendersCredit & Debt

Resolutions 2017: Save More Money Using 5 Simple TricksCredit & Debt

Porta-Potties for Presidential Inauguration Cause a StinkFamily

Protecting Trump Will Cost Taxpayers $35 MillionFamily

7 New Year’s Resolutions to Make With Your KidsFamily

5 New Year’s Resolutions That Will Pay Off 10 Years From NowCollege

10 Tasty Alcohol-Free Drinks That Adults Will LoveFamily

10 Simple Money Moves to Make Before the New YearFamily

Could Your Pet Benefit From Marijuana-Laced Treats?Family

Another major health insurance company is drastically scaling back its Obamacare participation, citing unsustainable financial losses.

Another major health insurance company is drastically scaling back its Obamacare participation, citing unsustainable financial losses.

Aetna announced this week that, for the 2017 plan year, it will no longer participate in more than 500 counties after it exits several individual public health care exchanges established under the Affordable Care Act, the federal law better known as Obamacare.

Once Aetna reduces its participation from 778 counties to 242 counties, it will have an on-exchange presence in only four states:

  • Delaware
  • Iowa
  • Nebraska
  • Virginia

Aetna attributes this decision to “total pretax losses of more than $430 million since January 2014 in our individual products,” citing a growing percentage of exchange enrollees who require costly medical care.

Mark T. Bertolini, Aetna chairman and chief executive, explains:

“Providing affordable, high-quality health care options to consumers is not possible without a balanced risk pool. Fifty-five percent of our individual on-exchange membership is new in 2016, and in the second quarter we saw individuals in need of high-cost care represent an even larger share of our on-exchange population. This population dynamic, coupled with the current inadequate risk adjustment mechanism, results in substantial upward pressure on premiums and creates significant sustainability concerns.”

Bertolini also noted that more than 40 other insurance companies have opted to stop selling plans in certain areas in individual public exchanges over the 2015 and 2016 plan years — “collectively exiting hundreds of rating areas in more than 30 states.”

Those health insurers include the nation’s largest, UnitedHealthcare, which announced this spring that it would exit exchanges in all but a “handful” of states by 2017.

The Associated Press reports, however, that some insurers already have plans to expand their presence on exchanges. Those with plans to branch out in 2017 include Cigna Corp. and Health Care Service Corp.

Kevin Counihan, CEO of the federal exchange operator, tells the AP:

“Aetna’s decision to alter its Marketplace participation does not change the fundamental fact that the Health Insurance Marketplace will continue to bring quality coverage to millions of Americans next year and every year after that.”

Open enrollment for the 2017 plan year starts Nov. 1, according to

What’s your take on this news? Share your thoughts with us by commenting below or over on our Facebook page.

Stacy Johnson

It's not the usual blah, blah, blah

I know... every site you visit wants you to subscribe to their newsletter. But our news and advice is actually worth reading! For 25 years, I've been making people richer without making their eyes glaze over. You'll be glad you did. I guarantee it!


Read Next: 16 Ways to Beat the High Cost of Medical Care

Check Out Our Hottest Deals!

We're always adding new deals and coupons that'll save you big bucks. See the deals to the right and hundreds more in our Deals section.

Click here to explore 1,903 more deals!