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Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services

UnitedHealth Says It's Losing Money Participating In Obamacare

Even though UnitedHealth Group posted over a billion dollars in net earnings, the company says it's losing money through insurance exchanges.

By Stephanie Liebergen | April 19, 2016

Hundreds of thousands of Americans will have one less insurance company to choose from through the government's health care exchanges next year. 

UnitedHealth Group announced it's pulling out of a majority of the exchanges and only remaining in "a handful of states" in 2017. 

"The smaller overall market size and shorter term, higher risk profile within this market segment continue to suggest we cannot broadly serve it on an effective and sustained basis," Stephen Hemsley, UnitedHealth Group CEO, said.

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Even with the financial losses from providing insurance through the health care exchanges, UnitedHealth's net earnings were more than $1.6 billion in the first three months of 2016. That's about $200 million more than it made over the same period last year.

UnitedHealth offered insurance in 33 states in 2016, so reducing that number down to a handful means the change will affect more than half the country. Right now, we don't know which states will still have UnitedHealth as an option next year. 

This video includes clips from the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services and images from Maryland GovPics / CC BY 2.0.

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