Study: ACA market competition on the upswing, but regional variation persists

Although the ACA exchanges show signs of rebounding after 2017’s political turmoil sent some insurers scurrying, marketplaces with little competition are still common, according to a new report. The Urban Institute analyzed the state of competition in the Affordable Care Act exchanges in the 2017 plan year and found that 146 out of 498 nationwide rating regions had just one insurer available. Marketplaces with little competition are especially common in the South. By contrast, that number reached 202 in 2018, following a turbulent 2017 that saw multiple attempts to repeal the ACA. Some insurers crept back into the exchanges for 2019, according to the report, when there were 165 regions with just one available payer, but the trend is still worrying, the researchers said.

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