In this article we will cover Anthem Blue Cross of California and their decision to stop offering Covered California individual health insurance plans in most California regions, whether or not this affects your plan, and how to replace your Anthem Blue Cross of California individual health insurance plan during open enrollment 2018.

  1. Why is my Anthem health insurance policy being canceled? 
  2. When is my Anthem health insurance plan being canceled?
  3. Do I have to change my dental and vision plans too?
  4. I bought my Anthem health policy before March 23, 2010. Are grandfathered Anthem plans safe?
  5. What are my options for a new California health insurance policy?
  6. What Blue Shield of California Plan is most similar to my Anthem Blue Cross Plan?
  7. What Health Net of California plan is most similar to the plan I am currently on?
Why is my Anthem health insurance policy being canceled? 

This year Anthem has decided to pull most of their individual business from the Covered California insurance marketplace. This includes both on-exchange Covered California plans and off-exchange Covered California plans. According to Brian Ternan, President of Anthem Blue Cross of California, Anthem's reason for doing this is because the market for individual health insurance plans in California has become unstable. And with the continual change of federal rules and regulations, it's no longer profitable or possible to offer individual health insurance plans in the state of California.

Please note that this is only applicable for Anthem individual health policies in the state of California. This does not include Anthem group health insurance plans, Anthem Medicare supplements, Anthem dental insurance, and Anthem vision insurance; all of which will still be sold and supported by Anthem.

The map below indicates where Anthem will continue to offer their individual plans. As you can see Anthem will no longer be offering PPO, and HMO options. The options will strictly be limited to EPO options. 

covered_california_2018 

Covered California's Individual Market in 2018: Competition and Choice Map

The regions and counties listed below will be unaffected by Anthem's withdrawal from most of the Covered California Marketplace.  You will still be able to buy Anthem Blue Cross EPO plans in:

Region 1 Northern Counties

  • Alpine County
  • Amador County
  • Butte County
  • Calaveras County
  • Colusa County
  • Del Norte County
  • Glenn County
  • Humbolt County
  • Lake County
  • Lassen County
  • Mendocino County
  • Modoc County
  • Nevada County
  • Plumas County
  • Shasta County
  • Sierra County
  • Siskiyou County
  • Sutter County
  • Tehama County
  • Trinity County
  • Tuolumne County
  • Yuba County

Region 10 Central Valley

  • Mariposa County
  • Merced County
  • San Joaquin County
  • Stanislaus County
  • Tulare County

Region 7

  • Santa Clara County

If you live in any of the counties not listed you will need to shop for a new health insurance plan during open enrollment 2018. 

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When is my Anthem health insurance plan being canceled?

It's important to note that this change will not take effect until January 1, 2018. Your current Anthem Blue Cross of California policy will continue to function as it has for the remainder of 2017. 

We are currently in the special enrollment period for health insurance plans. Which means that you can only enroll in a health Insurance plan if you have a qualifying event. Since your current plan will cover you until December 31, 2017 you do not need to worry about the special enrollment period.

Open Enrollment for 2018 California Health Insurance plans will begin on November 1, 2017 and go until December 15, 2017

Any health insurance plans that you enroll in during open enrollment will have an effective date of January 1, 2018.

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Do I have to change my dental and vision plans too?

If you have chosen a dental insurance or vision insurance policy through Anthem you will not need to switch policies. Anthem Blue Cross of California will continue to honor all of their current dental and vision policies throughout California.

The current offering of Anthem dental plans include:

  • Dental Blue PPO Basic
  • Dental Blue PPO Enhanced
  • Dental Select HMO
anthem_blue_cross_dental 

Anthem will also continue to offer their Blue View vision plan:

anthem_blue_cross_vision 

You will be able to continue to purchase Anthem dental and vision plans throughout the state of California. The map above of regions excluded from individual health insurance plans is not applicable to the dental and vision plan offerings. 

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I bought my Anthem health policy before March 23, 2010. Are grandfathered Anthem plans safe?

The Affordable Care Act (ACA), also referred to as "Obamacare", went in to affect on March 23, 2010. The health insurance plans that resulted from the Affordable Care Act can easily be identified because they will be named after one of 4 metal tiers: Platinum, Gold, Silver and Bronze.

When the Affordable Care Act went into effect many people had the option to keep their current plans. These Pre-ACA health insurance plans received "grandfathered" status.This means that Insurance companies will still honor then, but not sell them, and that doctors will still accept them. 

If you are currently enrolled in a "grandfathered" plan from Anthem Blue Cross of California your plan is safe. Anthem's decision to withdraw from most of California's individual insurance markets only affects the Post-ACA plans; everything after March 23, 2010. 

If you are on a "grandfathered" Anthem plan and would like to switch health plans you will most likely have to find a new insurance carrier because Anthem has withdrawn from most of California's individual markets. And, of course, grandfathered plans will no longer be available to purchase.

If you move off of your grandfathered plan you will never be able to get it back.

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What Are My Options for a New California Health Insurance Policy?

Now that Anthem has pulled out of most of the California health insurance market, there are now very few PPO insurance options in California.

If you are still looking for a PPO option, for your California health insurance plan, Blue Shield of California will be your best option. With the recent withdraw of Anthem Blue Cross from most of the California health insurance market, Blue Shield is really the only PPO option left. 

Blue Shield of California is the only health insurance carrier that will continue to offer PPO health insurance plans in all regions. As you can see from the map above, Blue Shield PPO plans can be found in all regions, and Blue Shield HMO plans are offered in most regions.

Another health insurance option is Health Net of California & Health Net Life Insurance Company. Health Net plans will primarily be available in the Bay Area and Southern California. Health Net offers a wide range of PPO, EPO, and HMO options. 

Health Net plans offer excellent coverage and they have the largest doctor network, but they can be pricey. Expect to pay 15% or more for a Health Net plan than you would pay for an equivalent Blue Shield plan. If you have a very long doctor list it may be worth considering a Health Net plan because of how large their doctor network is.

Before you choose a health insurance plan, the most important thing that you need to do is determine if your doctor is covered by that policy. You can check to see if your doctor is covered by checking the provider directory for each carrier.

A link for the provider directories of both Blue Shield and Health Net will be provided below. 

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What Blue Shield of California plan is most similar to my Anthem Blue Cross Plan?

blue_shield_of_california

 The chart below shows what plans are currently available from Anthem Blue Cross of California before they are  discontinued as of January 1, 2018. Beside each Anthem plan is the closest corresponding plan available through Blue  Shield of California.

 If you are reading this article before open enrollment 2018, March 1, 2017 - October 31, 2017, you have the option to set a  calendar reminder to reminder you to enroll on November 1st, which is the first day of open enrollment for 2018.

If you are reading this article during open enrollment 2018, November 1, 2017 - December 15, 2017, you have the option to enroll in the plan of your choice today by using our suggested enrollment links below.

Any health plans that you enroll in during open enrollment will have an effective date of January 1, 2018.

Please use the Blue Shield of California provider directory to determine if your doctor accepts the health insurance plan that you want to buy. Make sure to spell your doctor's name correctly because the provider directory won't correct the spelling, it will just say that the doctor can't be found.    

Anthem Blue Cross Plans

Blue Shield of California Replacement

Where To Buy Add To Calendar
Anthem Minimum Coverage D   Blue Shield Minimum Coverage PPO  Enroll Today  November 1, 2017
Anthem Bronze Pathway PPO 5000   Blue Shield Bronze 5550 PPO  Enroll Today  November 1, 2017
Anthem Bronze Pathway PPO 5750   Blue Shield Bronze 5550 PPO  Enroll Today  November 1, 2017
Anthem Bronze Pathway PPO 6600   Blue Shield Bronze 5550 PPO  Enroll Today  November 1, 2017
Anthem Silver Pathway PPO 1750  Blue Shield Silver 1850  Enroll Today  November 1, 2017
Anthem Silver Pathway PPO 2000   Blue Shield Silver 1850  Enroll Today  November 1, 2017
Anthem Bronze 60 D HDHP PPO   Blue Shield Bronze 60 HDHP PPO  Enroll Today  November 1, 2017
Anthem Bronze 60 D PPO  Blue Shield Bronze 60 PPO  Enroll Today  November 1, 2017
Anthem Silver 70 D PPO  Blue Shield Silver 70 PPO  Enroll Today  November 1, 2017
Anthem Gold 80 D PPO   Blue Shield Gold 80 PPO  Enroll Today  November 1, 2017
Anthem Platinum 90 D PPO  Blue Shield Platinum 90 PPO  Enroll Today  November 1, 2017
Anthem Silver 70 D HMO   Blue Shield Silver 70 HMO  Enroll Today  November 1, 2017
Anthem Gold 80 D HMO   Blue Shield Gold 80 HMO  Enroll Today  November 1, 2017
Anthem Platinum 90 D HMO   Blue Shield Platinum 90 HMO  Enroll Today  November 1, 2017

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What Health Net of California plan is most similar to my Anthem Blue Cross plan?

For the 2018 year Health Net has withdrawn from many areas as well.

If you are reading this article before open enrollment 2018, March 1, 2017 - October 31, 2017, you have the option to set a calendar reminder to reminder you to enroll on November 1st, which is the first day of open enrollment for 2018.

If you are reading this article during open enrollment 2018, November 1, 2017 - December 15, 2017, you have the option to enroll in the plan of your choice today by using our suggested enrollment links below.

Any health plans that you enroll in during open enrollment will have an effective date of January 1, 2018.

The Health Net plan availability is much more limited than the the Blue Shield plan availability. The list below details what Health Net plans are available in each California county. 

If a county is not listed it means that there are no Health Net plans available in that area. 

Health Net HSP and HMO plans will be available in:

  • Kern County
  • Los Angeles County
  • Orange County
  • Riverside County
  • San Bernardino County
  • San Diego County

Health Net PPO plans will be available in:

  • El Dorado County
  • SacramentoKern County
  • Los Angeles County
  • Orange County
  • Placer County
  • Riverside County
  • Sacramento County
  • San Bernardino County
  • San Diego County
  • Yolo County

Health Net EPO plans will be available in:

  • Contra Costa
  • Marin County
  • Mariposa County
  • Merced County
  • Monterey County
  • Napa County
  • San Benito County
  • San Francisco County
  • San Joaquin County
  • San Mateo County
  • Santa Cruz 
  • Solano County
  • Sonoma County
  • Stanislaus County
  • Tulare County

The chart below shows what plans are currently available from Anthem Blue Cross of California before they are discontinued as of January 1, 2018. Beside each Anthem plan is the closest corresponding plan available through Health Net of California and Health Net Life Insurance Company.

Please use the Health Net provider directory to determine if your doctor accepts Health Net plans. Many doctors who no longer accept individual health insurance plans are still accepting Health Net plans because the provider network is so large. 

Anthem Blue Cross Plans  Health Net Plans  Where To Buy   Add To Calendar
Anthem Minimum Coverage D Health Net Minimum Coverage PPO/EPO   Enroll Today  November 1, 2017
Anthem Bronze Pathway PPO 5000  Health Net Minimum Coverage PPO/EPO   Enroll Today  November 1, 2017
Anthem Bronze Pathway PPO 5750  Health Net Minimum Coverage PPO/EPO  Enroll Today  November 1, 2017
Anthem Bronze Pathway PPO 6600 Health Net Minimum Coverage PPO/EPO   Enroll Today  November 1, 2017
Anthem Silver Pathway PPO 1750 Health Net Silver 70 PPO/EPO  Enroll Today  November 1, 2017
Anthem Silver Pathway PPO 2000 Health Net Silver 70 PPO/EPO   Enroll Today  November 1, 2017
Anthem Bronze 60 D HDHP PPO Health Net Bronze 60 PPO/EPO   Enroll Today  November 1, 2017
Anthem Bronze 60 D PPO  Health Net Bronze 60 PPO/EPO   Enroll Today  November 1, 2017
Anthem Silver 70 D PPO  Health Net Silver 70 PPO/EPO   Enroll Today  November 1, 2017 
Anthem Gold 80 D PPO  Health Net Gold 80 PPO/EPO   Enroll Today  November 1, 2017
Anthem Platinum 90 D PPO  Health Net Platinum 90 PPO/EPO   Enroll Today  November 1, 2017
Anthem Silver 70 HMO Health Net Silver 70 HMO/HSP   Enroll Today  November 1, 2017
Anthem Gold 80 HMO  Health Net Gold 80 HMO/HSP  Enroll Today  November 1, 2017
Anthem Platinum 90 HMO  Health Net Gold 80 HMO/HSP   Enroll Today  November 1, 2017

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If you have any additional questions about open enrollment 2018 or need assistance finding a California health insurance plan for you and your family, please don't hesitate to contact The Lynn Company at (800)-326-5966.
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