Ohio once had 20 counties without any health plans available on the Obamacare exchanges. On Monday, the state said that number is down to just one. It’s a positive development for Obamacare, formally known as the Affordable Care Act, at a time when the future of the law remains uncertain. For the thousands of people in those counties who rely on the exchanges, this means they can now purchase a health insurance plan in 2018.
The counties cover 11,000 Ohio residents who purchase their insurance through the exchanges, as opposed to getting their coverage through their employer, Medicare, or Medicaid.
Paulding County, in northwest Ohio, is now the only county in the state doesn’t have a health plan available through the exchanges.
“There is more work to do as we try to secure coverage options in Paulding County while also making sure this plan can be finalized in the fall,” Ohio Department of Insurance director Jillian Froment said in a news release. “We will continue working with the industry, but those efforts are heavily dependent on market stability and clarity from Washington. We encourage Congress to work on ways to stabilize our health insurance markets.”
Early Friday morning, the Senate failed to pass a Republican healthcare plan. Following the vote Friday morning, President Donald Trump tweeted that Republicans should “let ObamaCare implode, then deal.”
The Trump administration, through the Department of Health and Human Services, could choose not to enforce key parts, including not paying to offset costs for insurance companies. That could lead to the law’s dissolution.
Health insurers have until late September to finalize their coverage areas.