Exchange roundup: Colorado market called 'very competitive'; California loses some plans

While some state marketplaces are adding insurance carriers -- and The Urban Institute calls Colorado's marketplace "very competitive" -- several plans will not be returning to Covered California.

The Denver Post: Colorado's Health Marketplace Competitive, Low-Priced, Study Says
Colorado's health insurance marketplace is "very competitive" and offers relatively low premiums, especially in its urban markets, according to a recent analysis by a health policy research group. The Urban Institute, a nonpartisan, nonprofit center has been tracking the effects of the Affordable Care Act with funding from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. In the Denver area, eight carriers offer coverage in the individual marketplace. The lowest-cost "silver" plan through the state exchange, called Connect for Health Colorado, costs $201 a month for a 27-year-old and $343 for a 50-year-old. Both were offered by Kaiser Permanente (Draper, 8/13).

California Healthline: Most Insurance Exchanges Just Got Bigger. Covered California Is Getting Smaller.
Kynect. Maryland Health Connection. The Washington Health Benefit Exchange. Every one of those state insurance exchanges added new carriers in preparation for Obamacare's second open enrollment period this fall. Covered California did not. Instead, the Golden State took a different approach: Its exchange is getting smaller (Diamond, 8/13).

The Star Tribune: Officials Say MNsure Will Be Ready For Open Enrollment
State officials offered assurances Wednesday that software fixes to the flawed MNsure health insurance exchange are happening as planned, and that the system should be in good working order by the Nov. 15 start of open enrollment. Still grappling with consumer fallout and political pressure over last year's troubled rollout, MNsure officials said changes are being made to the system that will allow more time for testing and that sufficient backup plans are in development if things go wrong. MNsure is preparing for the "worst case, if that comes about," interim Chief Operating Officer Wes Kooistra told the agency's board of directors, but he added that all hands are on deck to ensure an "improved user experience for 2015" (Crosby, 8/13).

http://www.kaiserhealthnews.orgThis article was reprinted from with permission from the Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation. Kaiser Health News, an editorially independent news service, is a program of the Kaiser Family Foundation, a nonpartisan health care policy research organization unaffiliated with Kaiser Permanente.

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