The same eight companies that offered individual health insurance plans (meaning not from an employer) in 2020 will return for 2021 - Anthem, Bright Health, Cigna Health, Denver Health, Friday Health, Kaiser, Rocky Mountain Health Plans and Oscar Health.
And two of those companies, Rocky Mountain Health Plans and Bright Health, are planning to expand their footprints in Colorado next year, bringing down the number of counties with only one health insurance company selling plans on Connect for Health Colorado, from 22 to 10 counties. In 2021, Rocky will offer plans in the following counties which currently have Anthem as their only on-exchange company: Dolores, Garfield, Gunnison, Hinsdale, Montezuma, Montrose, Ouray, Pitkin, San Juan and San Miguel. Rocky is also expanding into La Plata and Archuletta counties. Bright Health will be expanding into the following counties that currently only have one on-exchange company: Dolores, Grand, Lake, Montezuma and San Juan. They will also move into La Plata County. These expansions will leave Eagle, Jackson, Logan, Moffat, Phillips, Rio Blanco, Routt, Sedgwick, Washington and Yuma as the remaining counties with only one on-exchange health insurance company.
Overall, the number of individual plans the companies propose to offer next year, both on-and off-exchange, is increasing from 264 to 324. In the small group market (for small employers with less than 100 employees), Bright Health will be a new player, offering 40 plans, while some companies are scaling back their offerings. There will still be over 400 plans from 13 companies in the small group market, but the total number of plans will go down for 2021.
Kaiser is consolidating plans as they combine three separate service areas (Northern Colorado, Denver / Boulder and Colorado Springs / Pueblo) into one area. This is good news for consumers, as members in this expanded area will be free of the geographic service limitations each of those three areas currently impose. For 2021, members will not be cancelled, but will be slotted into their same plan with the expanded service area and new ID cards.
Preliminary information on the number of plans and insurance companies for the individual and small group market for 2021 can be found on the Division’s health insurance plan filings website. However, preliminary information regarding premiums will not be available until the end of July. The DOI is allowing the insurance companies to incorporate up-to-date data and assumptions related to COVID-19 through July 22nd.
The Division will make the preliminary premium information available in late July, after which the public is encouraged to comment on the insurance companies’ proposed plans and premiums. The DOI will then spend the rest of the summer conducting an in-depth review of this information and will release final, approved plans and premiums in early fall, ahead of the November 1 open enrollment start date.