This raises fresh concerns about the possibility of steep rate hikes for 2017 and of insurers leaving the Obamacare exchanges.
The study, the first of its kind to look at millions of enrollees across the country, found that Obamacare members have higher rates of costly illnesses such as diabetes, depression, hypertension, heart disease, HIV and Hepatitis C.
They also use more medical services -- including emergency rooms, in-patient hospital care, doctors and prescriptions than patients in employer-sponsored plans. Their cost of care was 22% higher than those in work-based health plans in 2015...
An adverse case mix? High utilizers? Steep rate hikes in 2017?
Wow, who could have foreseen all of this? Oh yeah, me.
There are ways to deal with all this, ways that would improve the outcomes of these people and be more efficient, but that'll never happen.
The fact that these patients are sicker than expected is putting some insurers in a financial bind. Several have reported big losses and have questioned whether they can afford to remain in the Obamacare market. This group includes UnitedHealth (UNH), the nation's largest insurer, which expects to lose nearly $1 billion on Obamacare in 2015 and 2016 and may not participate in 2017.
Negative loss run experience? Players dropping out? Again, who could have predicted this? Oh yeah, me.