As numerous insurance giants depart state health care exchanges amid uncertainty in Washington, one of Ohio’s leading providers is jumping into that state’s beleaguered insurance market.
CNBC reports that Cleveland Clinic partnered with Oscar Health to offer health insurance plans in Ohio — including on its exchange under the Affordable Care Act.
Oscar Health was established as technology-focused health insurance startup in 2014 in New York, and Cleveland Clinic officials reportedly hope its integrated model will help attract younger people to Oscar’s first co-branded offering.
That could be crucial since younger, healthier patients are needed to maintain ACA exchanges that tend to draw sicker enrollees. CNBC noted that Cleveland Care’s reputation could also prove attractive to more expensive ACA participants.
Cleveland Care executives told the network that they hope the new exchange model will mirror the success of its Medicare structure.
“Our first year performance in that program, we were the top performing (accountable care organization), generating significant savings for Medicare,” said market and network services executive director Kevin Sears. “We certainly are confident we’ll be able to do that in (the exchange) segment.”
The move comes as insurers in Ohio and elsewhere leave exchanges amid ferocious debate in Washington over the future of the ACA; Anthem announced it would depart Ohio’s market next year due to concerns that the federal government would not continue to fund insurance subsidies.
Oscar Health officials, however, said that elected officials on both sides of the debate understand the implications of simply allowing the exchanges to fail.
“I have a very hard time believing that is going to take place … it’s just frankly, bad economics,” CEO Mario Schlosser told CNBC.