Blue Cross Blue Shield of Alabama Says It Won’t Reinstate Old Policies

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BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (WHNT) - Blue Cross Blue Shield of Alabama announced Wednesday it will not reinstate current health plans that do not comply with the requirements of the Affordable Care Act (ACA).

The company released a statement with this news, almost a week after President Barack Obama said anyone whose policies had been cancelled would be able to keep them for up to a year.  Read the full statement.

"The company has worked for the last three and a half years to develop an array of plans that continue our commitment of providing comprehensive, reliable coverage for the healthcare needs of all of our customers at the most affordable cost possible," the statement from Blue Cross Blue Shield of Alabama read.

"The temporary reinstatement of policies that are non-ACA compliant would create dual classes of policyholders and destabilize the state’s insurance market and the risk pools associated with these health plans. The ultimate impact would be higher healthcare costs for all of our customers, now and in the near future."

Alabama's largest insurer said it did not reach this conclusion easily, and has been in 'continuous consulation' with the Alabama Department of Insurance in evaluating all options.

"A one-year continuation of policies that violates the ACA's requirements could create significant legal and financial risks to our policyholders, the state and our company," the statement read.

Blue Cross said in its 77-year history, the company has never cancelled a member's coverage because of declined health status or charged an individual higher premiums because of the presence of any medical condition. It went on to say Blue Cross is the only company that offers ACA-compliant healthcare coverage in every category in every county in Alabama.

The website for the Affordable Care Act,, has been plagued with problems since it debuted on October 1.  President Obama has said teams are fixing it and urges people to try the marketplace to see if a better, more affordable plan is there.


  • whitnaye515

    Maybe the sheep will wake up before being eat
    en by wolves. Scary now its hitting home…

    Keep holding out your hands for the free goodies.

    • Robert Palmer

      The poor insurance compannies are crying … all the way to the bank. They have a 25% “administrative cost plus a healthy profit margin. Don’t ever look for the insurance companies to do the right thing.

      The best thing our government could do would be to put everybody on Medicare where they have a 3% administrative cost and no fat profit margin.

    • rena

      just for (EDIT) giggles; i went to affordable healthcare website. of course you cannot even shop for healthcare unless you give them all your personal info up front (which is not secured.) anyway, i checked to see if i can afford their healthcare. i answered a few non-personal questions like, income and number of family members and if we smoked. even wanted to know if minor smoked. i did not qualify to buy a policy for my family because my household income is 225% of poverty level (yes i work full-time). i was given the “Silver” plan which is $6,534 a year. I receive a government tax credit of 52% but the total tax credit cannot be applied to the tobacco surcharge (whatever that is) for an annual premium amt. of $3,162 per year. My bring home pay is $11,352.00, Wait it gets better; here are my out-of-pocket cost that do NOT include the plan premium. No more than $10,400 and the actuarial value of 73%. i guess this means it pays at a… rate of 73% after the $10,400. i really dont understand this. The site also advised my minor child might want to get the catastrophic plan with annual out-of-pocket expense of $12,700. Or i might want to check into state medicade (All Kids).

      This is so stupid, the government is trying to take me off my employer provided (at a much lower cost to me) insurance and put (EDIT) me on the system!!!

      My summary is this; my premiums plus my out of pocket expenses is $13,562.00. I still have to pay the difference between 100% and 73%, which is 27% of health cost bills, so I need two more jobs because this leaves me in the negative of $1,913.00 plus an additional 27% of something! I pray for anyone who has a major medical illness and you are stuck with these goverment plans so called ObamaCare!

  • David Warren

    Health care companies are doing this act in order to make effort to band the affordable care act. They probably have more money than the United States already.and want to eat our wallets up even more! Mabe congress should vote on a act that should give us all free health care! No one should be turned down of medical help when needed.

    • Wake Up

      David, when you see the statistics showing how many people do not approve of Obamacare, some part of that statistic are those that do like it because it does not go far enough — that is to say, it is not a one-payer system.

    • Christopher

      David, you must have a lack of basic intelligence. The notion that Congress can vote to give everyone “free” health care is about the most absurd comment I have ever read. “Free” means someone has to pay for it. Who do you think will fund it if it is “free?” The answer is the 47% who are presently paying anything in…

      • David Warren

        Your right, you must have a lack of basic intelligence also. Neither Dem or Rep can tell us whats in it. I doubt you can either! I cant! I’m not saying that we should have to pay for it. It should be taken from all the money we are sending over seas including from companies that ship our jobs there. Also, a fair trade needs to take place. Ford, GM and Chrysler is allowed to ship 12 cars to japan each year. For each of our cars they charge a 100 thousand tarriff tax yet we take millions of their cars in the U.S. with no tax. Sound fair? I lived in Japan. I know this! Just think, The fed Gov shouldnt need extra taxes from any of us to pay for it!

    • Why Not

      If they’re making so much money, why don’t you start an insurance company and undercut their prices? Free market!

    • Christopher

      David, my comments were a reference to your notion that everyone should be provided free insurance simply by an act of Congress not whether every senator and representative has a through knowledge to the law’s content. I see you decided to go off in to left field to explain where the money could come from. That is the point, someone will have to pay for it, regardless of whether it is our current taxes as you suggest or some company. There is no such thing as free insurance, and I did not have to live in Japan to figure that out…

  • Michael Kewl

    Having just called BC/BS within a couple of hours, their representative said no decision has been made yet.

    Obviously, BC/BS does not want the business of all of us whom have been with them for many years as they choose to cancel after many of us received letters that our policies were acceptable some 2 months ago.

    After increasing my premiums by 408% and my deductible by 300% there is no way I will return to BC/BS ever again in my life.

    Already other Alabama businesses have decided to not renew with BC/BS and have moved to other insurers or the ACA.

    Tennessee BC/BS is re-instating their canceled polices for 1 year and Alabama as always is in the hands of a few profiting in Montgomery.

  • Carol M Hardin

    I’m not sure if this is relevant or not…..but, just so you know….BCBS of ALABAMA IS NOT an insurance company. They are a network provider owned by the hospitals and politicians. They ARE NOT regulated by the Alabama Department of Insurance. They can raise premiums every month if they should be so inclined. 95% of Alabamians are insured by BCBS……This is a travesty. I’m an insurance agent, but, do not write major medical insurance. I write life and health….supplemental policies primarily in the work force. It’s sad to see what is happening to all of us. Obamacare has basically put an end to my business.

      • Lee Atkins

        you cant take money out of the middle class and expect the country too do well all the money is going to the top and our jobs are going overseas when you will work for 2 bucks a day they will come back america this insurance is just a distraction GOOGLE : the Trans pacific partnership or TPP it will blow your mind its NAFTA on Steroids it destroys our sovereignty.

  • Waymon

    How appropriate; Best Little Johnny Joke:

    The kids filed into class Monday morning. They were all very excited.

    Their weekend assignment was to sell something, and then give a talk on salesmanship.

    Little Sally led off. “I sold Girl Scout cookies and I made $30” she said proudly. “My sales approach was to appeal to the customer’s civil spirit, and I credit that approach for my obvious success.”

    “Very good”, said the teacher.

    Little Debbie was next. “I sold magazines” she said. “I made $45 and I explained to everyone that magazines would keep them up on current events.”

    “Very good, Debbie”, said the teacher.

    Eventually, it was Little Johnny’s turn. The teacher held her breath.

    Little Johnny walked to the front of the classroom, and dumped a box full of cash on the teacher’s desk. “$2,467”, he said.

    “$2,467!” cried the teacher, “What in the world were you selling?”

    “Toothbrushes”, said Little Johnny.

    “Toothbrushes” echoed the teacher. “How could you possibly sell enough tooth brushes to make that much money?”

    “I found the busiest corner in town”, said Little Johnny. “I set up a Dip & Chip stand, and I gave everybody who walked by a free sample.”

    They all said the same thing: “Hey, this tastes like dog poop!”

    Then I would say, “It is dog poop. Wanna buy a toothbrush? I used the President Obama method of giving you some crap, dressing it up so it looks good, telling you it’s free, and then making you pay to get the bad taste out of your mouth.”

    Little Johnny got five stars for his assignment.

    Bless his heart. (and, I entered, which Heart?)

    • Wake Up

      I don’t get your joke! The ACA does not provide free health care. It does provide financial help to those that have not been able to afford health care insurance in the past. If you call no life time limits, no exclusions for per-existing conditions, children being able to stay on their parent’s plans while in college, prostate and mammograms without co-pays, and many other benefits crap — than give me some of that crap! Yum yum!

  • Sherry Underwood Lowery

    Wake up people don’t you know insurance companies rule to world. I can’t believe how much power they have……its called GREED!

  • Branko Pezdi

    Obama needed the ignorant, and he got them. Now we all have to pay the consequences.

    Everyone thinks that Obamacare is a failure, but in reality, it is working flawlessly.

    1.The White House knows that a give-away policy, once enacted, will never be repealed. So it doesn’t matter if it “works” or not, the money faucet has been turned on wide open forever.
    2. Fixing the website is an endless project with an unlimited unappropriated budget, that people will demand be fixed no matter the cost.
    3. Democrat Party front groups are setting up the navigation sites and populating the navigators, providing a permanent Democrat Party footprint in the inner cities. These agencies will expand, hire unqualified people and pay them lavishly, and engage in graft, cronyism, voter fraud and influence peddling, and in fact have already been caught doing so.
    4. Private insurance and, by extension, free enterprise have been painted as evil. This sets the stage for single payer.
    5. The mechanism is in place for complete control over our lives through the cost of “risky” behaviors like eating trans fats or owning a gun. The feds will have our complete medical histories on file, with instant updates, and the IRS will have complete control of our medical records.
    6. In the meantime, health care costs will go up for all but the very poor (Democrat voters) who will be subsidized by the shrinking pool of taxpayers, and simultaneously there will be severe shortages of medical care, historically proven in 100% of the cases where a centralized government takes over a free market function.

    All is working to plan as Dr. Evil says.

  • Rick

    Blue cross is just like all other insurance companies, they just want to continue to hike up costs till no one can afford it ,and untill then they contiue to gouge the average american for all they can.

  • Jim E Henson

    Mr Obumpa yr Head,Said I am going to explain. My health care program.It has to do with syn-omens and phenomenons.There are words that sound the same,but mean different things.Now when I say Obitch U worrier,it means gots to do with the antagonisms,of the repressed concern of the greed and the need for flagrant disregard of fact.I learned all dis stuffis from Jessy Action Jackson.Dont have to make sence just keep your Jaw a flappin.They dont have a translator for JIVE.

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