Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Louisiana estimated it lost $77 million on individual plans in 2015, $11 million more than 2014, as the company struggles with the impact of the Affordable Care Act, known as “Obamacare.”
Blue Cross told The Wall Street Journal that the risk from consumers buying coverage through the online federal marketplace is much higher than expected. The company repeated its criticisms of the federal health law, which doesn’t do enough to encourage healthy people to enroll.
Blue Cross said the losses can’t be sustained long term.
The company increased premiums for its Affordable Care Act policies by an average of about 15 percent for 2016. Blue Cross had about 175,000 individual policies in 2015.
The numbers were part of an analysis by J.P. Morgan. Blue Cross plans nationally brought in about $20.4 billion in individual-plan premiums but paid out $20.7 billion in medical claims. A year earlier, the Blue Cross plans took in more premium than they paid in claims.