• The media has a short term memory problem

    I was absolutely, positively going to ignore the child-only insurance policy story that’s revived again.  But then I saw it in Wonkbook so here it is:

    Health insurers in 34 states have stopped selling child-only insurance policies as a result of the health reform law, and the market continues to destablize.

    According to a survey of state insurance departments by Republican Senate committee staff and obtained by POLITICO, states that have seen carriers exit the market include those that have been ardent supporters of the health reform law, like California and Oregon. Twenty states now have no insurers offering child-only policies.

    This is old news, people.  I wrote this when it reared its head in September, and it’s still entirely applicable.

    I could just repost it and pretend it’s new, but that’s exactly what I’m faulting the media for doing.  So I won’t.  Please just go read it again.

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    • I would point out that this survey, in addition to not being “new” news, is (a) inaccurate and (b) still kind of important.

      For (a), I happen to know that in Oregon (which they cite as a state where carriers left the child-only market), the main culprit was Regence BCBS, and they re-entered once Oregon made it legal to impose open enrollment periods. It is weak protection from anti-selection, but apparently enough.

      For (b), the disruption is real in some states; especially (as far as I can tell) in states that previously lacked rate review processes. That’s a very anecdotal statement, I realize, but I am not going to cite specifics that my company has been involved in, nor specifics I have heard through the grapevine. C’est la vie.