Posts Tagged ‘Highmark Blue Cross Blue Shield’

Highmark Blue Cross Blue Shield Sole Insurer in WV Exchange

Saturday, September 14th, 2013

Competition breeds lower costs when it comes to insurance plans and most other things.  So will the fact that there will only be one health insurance company in West Virginia’s exchange mean that premium costs will be less competitive?  We don’t know yet, but we will know more about pricing when the exchanges across America start offering plans October 1.  According to the Cumberland Times-News out of West Virginia in the article, “Insurance market in W.Va. will have one company,” two insurers applied and were accepted into the state’s health insurance exchange, but only one is following through with their plans.  Carelink/Coventry withdrew from the individual health insurance exchange marketplace in West Virginia.  Their parent company, Aetna, reevaluated their overall strategy and determined that they would wait to see what happened with the exchanges in 2014 before offering plans in this state.  They decided to focus on markets where they feel they can be the most competitive and offer the most value to consumers.

Highmark Blue Cross Blue Shield will be the only insurer participating in West Virginia’s exchange when it starts offering plans next month.  They will be offering eleven different individual plans and four small business plans in that particular marketplace.  Each plan will offer different coverage levels with differing costs.  Plan enrollment will start at the beginning of next month, while coverage will start at the beginning of next year.  West Virginians for Affordable Health Care’s executive director believes that premium prices would be better with more competition in the marketplace.  But Highmark Blue Cross Blue Shield might offer great pricing, it’s just not yet available for viewing.  He is hopeful that more health insurance companies will join the exchange in the future, making pricing more competitive.  There is always the possibility that Caremark/Coventry will start offering plans in the future, according to a spokesman for Aetna.