3.5 million insurance policies canceled in just 22 states

Rick McKee, The Augusta Chronicle

The Associated Press (AP) reported recently that 3.5 million health insurance policies had been canceled because of changes in the plans that resulted in the loss of their “grandfathered” status under Obamacare regulations.

But a separate report from the news organization, released last week, indicates that this is just the minimum number as most states aren’t keeping track of the cancelations or the numbers weren’t available. This report, complied by AP staffers, shows that the 3.5 million cancellations have come from just 22 states and the District of Columbia.

The “grandfathered plan” regulations written by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) and Department of Health and Human are very strict. Most people don’t realize that the vast majority of insurance plans go through some sort of change over time. But virtually any change a pre-Obamacare plan, either by the insurer or consumer, means that the policy can no longer exist and the consumer would have purchase one compliant with law’s mandates.

Even plans with grandfathered status would eventually have to comply with at least some of the mandates. But despite President Obama and his subordinates blaming insurance companies for the cancellations, these rules — written by bureaucrats in his administration — are entirely responsible.

The AP reported California has seen the largest number of policy cancellations, at 900,000. Georgia and Florida have seen 400,000 and 300,000 cancellations. Three other states have seen more than 200,000 cancellations — Washington (290,000), Pennsylvania (215,000 to 250,000), and Michigan (225,000).

Some of the states represented by vulnerable Democrats have reported cancellations, including North Carolina (160,000), Louisiana (10,000), and Alaska (5,300). Arkansas isn’t tracking the numbers. Some of these Senate Democrats are worried about the political ramifications of these cancellations and are urging a legislative fix, despite already missing that opportunity.

Though this may have changed in recent days, states with large populations — including Illinois, Ohio, Texas, and Virginia — either haven’t reported numbers or were not tracking cancellations at the time, according to the AP.

Again, the 3.5 million number isn’t a true reflection of the total number of canceled policies, nor will the flood of notices end anytime soon.


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