First United, Then Aetna, Scott & White, and Now Oscar: Analyzing The 2017 Marketplace After Big-Name Exits

UnitedHealthcare, Aetna, the Scott & White Health Plan, and now Oscar—insurance plans are fleeing the Affordable Care Act’s public exchanges in North Texas and beyond, raising questions about whether it’s possible for a payer to attract a population with enough healthy people to balance out the costs of treating the sick. Full Story

The Scott & White Health Plan Pulls Its Obamacare Products From the 2017 Exchanges

Signs that the plan’s products were struggling appeared last year after its operators requested rate hikes of more than 30 percent ahead of the 2016 enrollment period. In a Q&A posted to its website, the plan says it will be removing its gold, silver, and selected bronze benefit plans from the marketplace, which will affect about 4,600 Texans. Full Story

Payers Using Public Price Hikes to Address Rising Cost of Doing Business on Exchanges

With insurers still reeling from paying out more in claims than they attract in premiums on the Obamacare exchanges, they’re using public price increasing requests to argue their case. They’re doing so in hearings all over the country while facing difficult questioning from state officials and consumers who struggle to understand why, each year, the payers request rate increases. Full Story

PwC: Healthcare Spending Growth Flat in 2017, But Two Emerging Trends May Change That

Global consulting firm PricewaterhouseCoopers anticipates another year of flat growth for healthcare spending among employees in sponsored plans, but high performing narrow networks and the increased access to outpatient centers will likely move the needle one or the way other in the years to come. Full Story

From the Magazine: LaMonte Thomas, Head of Cigna’s N. Texas Division, on His Passion

As a young boy, LaMonte Thomas watched in awe as locomotives passed by his middle school. He dreamed of jumping aboard and taking off for destinations unknown. His fascination with trains has stuck with him through the years, and provides the basis for his favorite pastime—model railroads. Now in his 20th year at Cigna, he serves as president and general manager for North Texas and Oklahoma. Thomas first discovered the world of model railroads at a train show in Virginia. Full Story