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Anthem withdraws from most Nevada, Georgia ACA exchanges

Anthem Inc. is withdrawing from most of Nevada's and Georgia's Affordable Care Act state exchanges for 2018, the company said.

In Nevada, Anthem will only offer one off-exchange catastrophic plan statewide, downsizing from the plan announced in June to offer health maintenance organization plans in three counties.

Nevada Insurance Commissioner Barbara Richardson said in a statement that Anthem requested a 62% average rate increase, without factoring in the cost-sharing reductions, or CSRs, that many insurers have relied upon.

“The Division is continuing to work with our state partners on attracting an insurance carrier to serve the 14 bare counties and to support the stability of the market for those insurance carriers who remain," Richardson said.

The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services projected 19 counties would have have no insurers offering ACA plans in 2018. Of those 19, 14 were in Nevada.

In Georgia, Anthem will offer on- and off-exchange individual plans in 85 mostly rural counties — about half of the counties in the state — that the insurer said would otherwise not have health insurance coverage.

The company recently made exits in California, Wisconsin and Indiana. On the company's second-quarter earnings call, Chairman, President and CEO Joseph Swedish said the company would make more withdrawals if CSRs and other parts of the ACA are not held intact.

Anthem cited uncertainty about the CSR subsidies as well as federal operations, rules and guidance and the restoration of taxes on fully insured coverage as reasons for its withdrawals.

"Today, planning and pricing for ACA-compliant health plans has become increasingly difficult due to a shrinking and deteriorating individual market," the company said in a statement.