Tags: Healthcare Reform | cms | co-pay | obamacare

2.4m Have Only One Health Insurance Choice on Exchanges

2.4m Have Only One Health Insurance Choice on Exchanges
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Tuesday, 15 August 2017 10:14 AM Current | Bio | Archive

The number of insurance companies dropping out of the Obamacare exchanges is beginning to have a measurable impact on consumer choice and competition.

Just 141 qualified health plans have applied to provide coverage on healthcare exchanges in 2018. That’s a 38 percent decline from the 227 applications filed last year.[1] As a result, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) estimates that at least 2.4 million Americans will have only one insurance option available through the exchanges.

In the map below, red counties have no insurance providers available while the yellow counties have just one.

RasmussenMedMapforTues08152017NMHP.png

As competition declines and costs go up, the number of people willing to buy Obamacare coverage without a subsidy has declined. In 2016, 7.5 million people were willing to make such a purchase. That figure fell to 5.4 million in 2017.[1]

Consumer resistance to higher costs is also found in the 6.5 million people who have chosen to pay a fine rather than purchase the levels of insurance mandated by Obamacare. Additionally, the Congressional Budget Office estimates that 15 million other Americans would opt out of Obamacare coverage if they were allowed to do so.

Despite the problems of the insurance markets, technology is both improving the quality and reducing the cost of healthcare coverage. Traditional approaches require an average of 18.4 days to actually see the doctor after making an appointment. Then, it takes two hours out of the day to spend just 20 minutes with the physician. That’s because a typical visit involves 101 minutes in the waiting room and travel time.

However, a telemedicine visit takes only about 5 minutes to see the doctor and about 10 minutes for the consultation. A bonus is that telemedicine visits are significantly less expensive than an office visit. In fact, the total cost for a video consultation is often less than the co-pay for an in-office visit.

Footnotes:

1. National Review, "Is Part of the Health-Insurance Market Entering a Death Spiral?" August 3, 2017

Scott Rasmussen’s Number of the Day is published by Ballotpedia. Each weekday, Scott Rasmussen’s Number of the Day explores interesting and newsworthy topics at the intersection of culture, politics, and technology.

Scott Rasmussen is a Senior Fellow for the Study of Self-Governance at the King’s College in New York and an Editor-At-Large for Ballotpedia, the Encyclopedia of American Politics. His most recent book, "Politics Has Failed: America Will Not," was published by the Sutherland Institute in May.To read more of his reports — Click Here Now.

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The number of insurance companies dropping out of the Obamacare exchanges is beginning to have a measurable impact on consumer choice and competition.
cms, co-pay, obamacare
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2017-14-15
Tuesday, 15 August 2017 10:14 AM
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