Thousands in NC fail to get Blue Cross coverage because they didn’t pay first premium

More than 6,400 people in North Carolina did not pay their first premiums for new ACA health insurance plans and, consequently, saw their coverage dropped.

Those individuals signed up for plans on the federally run health insurance exchange marketplace, the online portal where private insurers post health plans and individuals can comparison-shop.

In North Carolina, only Blue Cross and Blue Shield of North Carolina and Coventry Health Care offer insurance plans on the exchange. Blue Cross of N.C. said 6,400 people went through the process of selecting a plan but didn’t make the final step to make their first premium payment, resulting in a loss of coverage. Coventry, which is owned by Aetna Health Inc., did not release North Carolina-specific numbers, but it says it signed up 135,000 nationwide, and more than 70 percent paid their first month’s premium.

People who lost coverage may reapply, though they must go through the entire process again.

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