Health Republic of New York, the nation’s largest Obamacare co-op, had been ordered shut down by state regulators last month. But to everybody’s surprise, the insurer’s finances are so dismal that they will have to be shut down in two weeks leaving roughly 215,000 customers scrambling to find new, potentially less affordable plans.
Health Republic, one of New York’s largest health insurers on the state’s exchange, will be shut down by Nov. 30, and customers will need to find new policies in two weeks, state officials announced Friday.
Federal and state regulators on Sept. 25 ordered Health Republic, which covered about 20 percent of private insurance plans on New York State of Health, to be shut down by year’s end.
But the state announced Friday that the “company’s financial condition is substantially worse than the company previously reported in its filings” to the state Department of Financial Services. It lost at least $78 million last year, according to reports.
The state said it will assist individuals who still have a Health Republic plan to find a new insurer by Nov. 15.
Initially, the state planned to let customers find a new plan by Jan. 1.
According to a Daily Caller report, “the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services gave $355 million in low-cost loans to Health Republic, which included an emergency solvency loan of $91 million in September 2014.”
In other words, they took roughly $446 million in loans and turned it into a loss of nearly $80 million.
Syracuse.com recently ran an article describing customer anxiety as a result of having to find new insurance plans – something that will surely amplify now that the time frame has been cut down from two months, to two weeks.
Anxiety will likely be heightened due to sticker shock as well:
Health Republic customers who don’t qualify for credits will probably pay more for 2016 coverage when they switch plans. Health Republic’s lowest cost silver plan, the most popular type of Obamacare coverage, was $215.97 this year in Onondaga County. In 2016 the lowest cost silver plan in Onondaga County offered by Fidelis will be $377.65 — $124.68 more than Health Republic.
In another example, one customer had been paying $393/month, but will now be paying $562.18/month after shifting to a new plan.
Health Republic is one of ten co-ops being shutterred throughout the nation, and the lone one in New York state.
Cross-posted at the Mental Recession