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Oscar to enter exchange market in 6 states

Oscar has filed to offer health insurance products in Ohio, Texas, New Jersey, Tennessee, California, and New York in 2018.

Susan Morse, Senior Editor

Days after announcing it was collaborating with the Cleveland Clinic to offer a co-branded exchange product in five counties in Ohio, Oscar has announced it is expanding its health plan footprint in five other states.

Oscar has filed to offer health insurance products in Ohio, Texas, New Jersey, Tennessee, California, and New York in 2018, according to CEO and cofounder Mario Schlosser.

[Also: Cleveland Clinic risks entry into health insurance market with plan co-branded with Oscar Health]

"We're confident that when the dust settles, the market for health insurance will stabilize in time for 2018," Schlosser said. "For all of the political noise, there are simply too many lives at stake for representatives in Washington, D.C. not to do what's right for the people."

Oscar is entering the Affordable Care Act market while other insurers have fled amid uncertainty over the future of the ACA, lack of a federal guarantee to continue cost-sharing reduction payments and lackluster financial performance.

[Also: Uncertainty over insurance marketplaces grows as payers exit ACA exchanges]

"We've built an Oscar experience that's unique in health care: deep integrations with hospitals and doctors; tools for members to find the right care; a data science operation that enables proactive clinical insights; personalized concierge team service; and free, 24/7 virtual visits," Schlosser said.

Oscar is focused on the long term for more affordable care, which includes more transparency into what things cost and erasing the friction between hospitals and insurers, he said, without giving details.

It has filed in New York State to offer Oscar for Business to employers and also to offer individual and family plans on and off the exchanges.

After serving the individual market in New Jersey in 2015 and 2016, Oscar has filed for approval to form a new New Jersey insurance company to offer plans in 14 counties for employer plans and individual products on and off the exchanges. New Jersey employers enrolled in Oscar for Business will have access to the New York network.

[Also: Lack of CSRs one reason Anthem BCBS to leave ACA market in Ohio]

In Texas, Oscar will offer plans in Austin and greater San Antonio.

In Tennessee it is moving into Nashville.

In California, Oscar is seeking regulatory approval to expand into east Los Angeles County in both the individual market and for small businesses.


Twitter: @SusanJMorse