MOUNTAIN VIEW, Calif.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Sep. 1, 2017--
eHealth, Inc. (Nasdaq: EHTH) CEO Scott Flanders today endorsed the
Department of Health and Human Service’s (HHS) decision to reduce and
rethink the Affordable Care Act’s (ACA or Obamacare) navigator program,
which spent over $62 million to enroll 81,000 people in Obamacare in
2017 ($768 per enrollment).
“Secretary Price has an obligation to the American people to use their
money effectively and efficiently, and the navigator program failed on
both fronts,” said Scott Flanders, CEO of eHealth, Inc. “The navigator
program’s results are discouraging, but HHS’ decision to acknowledge
that failure and try something else is a positive step for government.”
HHS provided the following findings about the Navigator program (source):
Navigators received $62.5 million for the 2017 Open Enrollment Period
Navigators enrolled 81,426 people for 2017 at an average cost of $768
One-in-five navigators achieved their performance goals.
“At eHealth we wholeheartedly endorsed the Affordable Care Act's goal of
expanding coverage and improving access to health coverage for people
with pre-existing conditions,” Flanders continued.
“Where the legislation has fallen short is in its goal to make health
coverage affordable for middle-class families and young, healthy people
who are so critical to creating a healthy, balanced risk pool. Replacing
the individual mandate, which has not worked, with a functioning
alternative would be a good first step,” Flanders continued.
“We also need to acknowledge the strides Secretary Price is
making to stabilize the individual insurance market. This year HHS
tightened up enforcement of the special enrollment periods so people
can’t wait until they get sick to buy health insurance. And, under
Secretary Price, HHS is requiring people to repay their past-due
premiums before they can sign up for a new health plan. Those are two
very positive steps that will help bring more insurance companies back
to the market and reduce volatility in insurance premiums.”
“HHS has also taken steps to make it easier for consumers to enroll in
Obamacare health plans, using their tax credit, without using
Healthcare.gov,” Flanders continued.
“HHS is embracing smart, simple, cost-effective, market-minded ways to
stabilize the individual insurance market. My ongoing concern is for
middle-class families. In June, eHealth analyzed1 projected
rate increases for 2018 and found that health insurance would be
unaffordable for the majority of middle-class families who don’t qualify
for Obamacare subsidies in 2018 based on eHealth’s customer data from
last year,” Flanders continued.
“Giving the market more freedom to innovate will improve the health and
well-being of every citizen,” Flanders concluded.
1 Obamacare Premiums for 2018 Projected to Make Health
Insurance Unaffordable for Many, eHealth Analysis Finds (http://news.ehealthinsurance.com/news/obamacare-premiums-for-2018-projected-to-make-health-insurance-unaffordable-for-many-ehealth-analysis-finds)
eHealth, Inc. (NASDAQ: EHTH) owns eHealth.com,
a leading private online health insurance exchange where individuals,
families and small businesses can compare health insurance products from
leading insurers side by side and purchase and enroll in coverage
online, over the phone or through online chat. eHealth offers thousands
of individual, family and small business health plans underwritten by
many of the nation's leading health insurance companies. eHealth
(through its subsidiaries) is licensed to sell health insurance in all
50 states and the District of Columbia. eHealth also offers educational
resources, exceptional telephonic support, and powerful online and
pharmacy-based tools to help Medicare beneficiaries navigate Medicare
health insurance options, choose the right plan and enroll in select
plans online, or over the phone, through Medicare.com (www.Medicare.com),
and PlanPrescriber.com (www.PlanPrescriber.com).
View source version on businesswire.com: http://www.businesswire.com/news/home/20170901005687/en/
Source: eHealth, Inc.
DMA Communications for eHealth, Inc.
Sande Drew, 916-207-7674
John Hart, 571-279-1023