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Anthem Blue Cross of California is withdrawing from 16 of California’s 19 Pricing Regions where it serves approximately 153,000 consumers, while remaining in three regions (Region 1, 7 and 10) where it covers more than 108,000 consumers (41 percent of their current enrollment).
Actual letters and commentary – Insure Me Kevin.com
Anthem will discontinue many ACA health plans in 2018
Until then, everything will stay the same
You may have already heard, but we wanted to let you know that Anthem Blue Cross (Anthem) will no longer offer many of our Affordable Care Act (ACA) individual health [thus Medicare & Grandfathered Plans appear to be OK] plans in California starting Jan.1, 2018. Until then, everything will stay the same.
What should I do if I have an individual ACA health plan?
If this affects you, you’ll have plenty of time to prepare. You’ll get a formal notice from us in the mail telling you that your plan is ending in 2018. As open enrollment gets closer, you can look at other plans so you can find new coverage. We’ll help you connect with someone [Like Steve Shorr, a wonderful guy] who can assist you in finding a new plan, even if it’s not with Anthem. In the meantime, you can log into Anthem.com/ca to contact us or view the details of your current plan.
Why is Anthem doing this?
Unfortunately, uncertainty in the health insurance market does not provide the clarity and confidence we need to offer affordable coverage to our members in 2018. [Like subsidies for Enhanced Silver]
Anthem is committed to affordable health care coverage and we’re truly sorry we can’t continue offering these plans. We hope to increase our plan offerings in California very soon.
Please visit our Better Care Blog article for more information.
August 01, 2017
A Message from Brian Ternan
President of Anthem Blue Cross in California
For more than seven decades, we’ve been proud to offer affordable health plans that give Californians access to quality health care. In 2014, when the Affordable Care Act (ACA) started, we created a new set of quality, affordable health plans to offer consumers through the Health Insurance Marketplace, also called Covered California.
But the market for these plans has become unstable. And with federal rules and guidance changing, it’s no longer possible for us to offer some of those plans.
Starting in 2018, we will offer plans in three Covered California Rating Areas, which covers 28 counties.
This was not an easy decision for us. We know that changes like these can have a real impact on the people we serve. Nothing will change for this year. Beginning on January 1, 2018, we’ll offer plans in three regions of Northern California only, which will include Region 1 (Redding/Far North), Region 7 (Santa Clara County), and Region 10 (Stockton/Modesto). The coverage will include an Exclusive Provider Organization (EPO) plan and will be available both on-exchange and off-exchange, and at all metal levels. This doesn’t impact people with Anthem’s employer-based insurance, Medicare Advantage, Medicare Supplement, Medi-Cal, or individuals and families whose plans are “grandfathered” (grandfathered plans must have been purchased prior to March 23, 2010).
We’re committed to helping you find health plan options for 2018 and beyond, and we’ll continue to work hard to find new ways to keep health care benefits affordable. As we get closer to open enrollment, we’ll update this page with new information. So you may want to bookmark it to return here easily. In the meantime, if you have questions, please take a look at the frequently asked questions (FAQs) and links to other resources below.
- Q: Which counties are included in the regions you’ll offer plans for 2018?
- A: Region 1 includes Alpine, Amador, Butte, Calaveras, Colusa, Del Norte, Glenn, Humboldt, Lake, Lassen, Mendocino, Modoc, Nevada, Plumas, Shasta, Sierra, Siskiyou, Sutter, Tehama, Trinity, Tuolumne, and Yuba counties. Region 7 includes Santa Clara County. Region 10 includes Mariposa, Merced, San Joaquin, Stanislaus, and Tulare counties.
- Q: I have an Anthem individual ACA health plan — when do I have to find new coverage?
- A: Nothing is changing with your Anthem ACA health plan in 2017. Later this year, you’ll have to shop for a new plan for 2018. You’ll do this during the open enrollment period starting November 1. Affected members will receive an official notice that their plan is ending, along with information on options for next year. We’ll help you connect with the right people to find a new plan.
- Q: I didn’t switch to an ACA plan, my individual health plan is grandfathered/grandmothered. Does this affect me?
- A: No, this change affects Anthem’s ACA individual health plans only.
- Q: Is Anthem also discontinuing individual dental and vision plans in California?
- A: No, this change affects Anthem’s individual ACA health plans only. We’ll continue to offer dental and vision plans in California.
- Q: I get health benefits from my employer. Does this affect me?
- A: No, this change affects Anthem’s individual ACA health plans only. Plans sponsored by employers are not impacted.
- Q: I have an Anthem Medicare plan. Does this affect me?
- A: No, this change affects Anthem’s individual ACA health plans only. Anthem’s Medicare plans are not impacted. So, far, per telephone conversations this will not affect grandfathered plans or Medicare & Medi-Cal.
Where will Blue Cross still write business?
Rating region 1 Rural North/Sierra Alpine, Del Norte, Siskiyou, Modoc, Lassen, Shasta, Trinity, Humboldt, Tehama, Plumas, Nevada, Sierra, Mendocino, Lake, Butte, Glenn, Sutter, Yuba, Colusa, Amador, Calaveras, Tuolumne
Rating region 7 Santa Clara Santa Clara
Rating region 10 Central Valley North San Joaquin, Stanislaus, Merced, Mariposa, Tulare
Competition won’t be so healthy next year for Covered California enrollees in six counties: Monterey, San Benito, San Luis Obispo, Santa Barbara, Inyo and Mono. For them, it will be Blue Shield of California — or bust.
Portions of seven other counties will also be served only by Blue Shield. CA Health Line
2 ways to apply for 1/1/18 effective date:
- Open Enrollment – Applicants requesting a 1/1/18 effective date, should apply no later than midnight 12/15/17.
- As a Qualifying Event – Applicants may apply up until midnight 12/31/17 for a 1/1/2018 effective date in all regions except 1, 7, and 10, if they are losing their Anthem coverage 12/31/17.
Since this is a Qualifying Event for Special Enrollment, please keep in mind that the application will be subject to underwriting review and requires qualifying event & residency documents. Please allow extra time for this Underwriting review.
Your Anthem clients have 60 days from the qualifying event to enroll, the last possible SEP application receipt date is 2/28/18, for a 3/1/18 effective date. Blue Shield Email 8.21.2017
Related pages on our website
- 2018 Plans where Blue Cross is staying
- Instant Quotes & Rates for 2018, starting 11.1.2017
- Rx – Prescription Drugs
- 2018 Plans & Withdrawl from Los Angeles – Southern CA
- Administrative ONLINE Member Portal – Services
- zHistorical Info – Blue Cross
- $8.3 Million Refund – Wrongful Change of Deductible
- 2017 Information
- Data Breach – Hacking Anthem Blue Cross Wellpoint
- Feller Settlement
- Serencsa v Blue Cross
- Which plans are grandfathered?