No Health Care Policy Extensions in Wash. State

Nov 14, 2013

Washington state’s insurance commissioner says he will not allow companies to extend canceled policies. State commissioners are able to overrule the concession President Barack Obama announced Thursday.

Commissioner Mike Kreidler said allowing people to keep their old plans would warp the whole marketplace.

“That’s extremely difficult and disruptive to the market,” Kriedler said. “If you went and allowed those plans to continue, it could be very possible to see so much impact that we’d have to see significant rate increases on the plans that have been improved.”

Kreidler said extending the old plans would force insurance companies to refigure all the assumptions built into their new prices. He said he has empathy for people whose plans are being canceled, but like the president, he believes the new plans available on Washington’s health exchange are much better than those going away.

Kriedlers said he spoke with commissioners from across the nation following the president’s announcement, and most were skeptical the president’s Band-Aid will work.