Repealing Itself? Only Four of 24 Obamacare Co-Ops Remain Open
Only four of the original 24 Obamacare health co-ops remain standing after Maryland’s co-op announced Dec. 8 it was suspending the sale of individual health insurance policies, the Daily Caller News Foundation Investigative Group has found.
With the near-collapse of Maryland’s co-op — called Evergreen Health — at least 989,000 individuals nationwide have lost their health insurance coverage when the nonprofit co-ops stopped selling insurance to customers, according to TheDCNF’s tally.
The losses cost taxpayers at least $2.2 billion in upfront federal loans awarded by the Obama administration to 24 nonprofit co-ops under Obamacare. The co-ops were intended to help keep health care costs down by providing non-profit competition with commercial for-profit insurers.
The losses do not include statewide costs where the state or local governments were forced to cover doctor and hospital bills that the failed co-ops could not pay from remaining revenues.
In many cases, those losses were substantial. In New York alone, state taxpayers face at least $200 million in costs owed to medical providers that the bankrupt Health Republic co-op could not cover, according to the Albany Business Review.
Evergreen Health had hoped to find a for-profit partner to bail it out of its precarious financial situation. It owes the federal government $22 million in risk payments, and is unable to cover it, according to the Baltimore Business Journal..
About 9,000 individual customers who went with the co-op out of 264,000 who signed up for all Obamacare health insurance programs available in the state, according to the Baltimore Sun. All 9,000 are being dropped and must find new health insurance coverage during the holiday season.
Maine’s co-op is in state-ordered receivership and it has suspended new enrollment for customers.
The four remaining co-ops clinging to financial solvency are in Massachusetts, Montana, New Mexico, Wisconsin.
The failed co-ops were serving customers in Arizona, Colorado, Connecticut, Illinois, Iowa and Nebraska, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Michigan, Nevada, New Jersey, New York, Ohio, Oregon, South Carolina, Tennessee, Utah and now Maryland.
Oregon had two co-ops, both of which failed. Vermont’s insurance commissioner, skeptical of its financial plan, refused to license the co-op.
Politically-connected Democratic activist Sarah Horowitz won a total of $435 million from the Obama administration to establish three health co-ops, in New York, New Jersey and Oregon. All three failed, but not before Horowitz’s organization received millions in consulting fees.
The failed states, the amount of their loans and the number of enrollees who lost coverage are:
- Arizona – $93 million in a loan, 59,000 lost coverage
- Colorado – $72 million in a loan, 80,000 lost coverage
- Connecticut – $128 million in a loan, 40,000 lost coverage
- Illinois – $160 million in a loan, 49,000 lost coverage
- Iowa/Nebraska – $145 million in a loan, 120,000 lost coverage
- Kentucky – $146 million in a loan, 51,000 lost coverage
- Louisiana – $66 million in a loan, 17,000 lost coverage
- Maryland – $65 million in a loan, 9,000 lost coverage
- Maine – $132 million in a loan, a portion of 71,000 will lose coverage
- Michigan – $72 million in a loan, 28,000 lost coverage
- Nevada – $66 million in a loan, 63,000 lost coverage
- New Jersey – $109 million in a loan, 35,000 lost coverage
- New York – $265 million in a loan, 208,000 lost coverage
- Ohio – $129 million in a loan, 22,000 lost coverage
- Oregon – $61 million in a loan, 15,000 lost coverage
- Oregon – $57 million in a loan, 21,000 lost coverage
- South Carolina – $88 million in a loan, 67,000 lost coverage
- Tennessee – $73 million in a loan, 29,700 lost coverage
- Utah – $90 million in a loan, 56,000 lost coverage
- Vermont – $34 million in a loan – never licensed
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