Boone Hospital could opt out of health care exchange

ST. LOUIS (AP) - Missouri's largest health provider likely won't be a part of the state's new health insurance exchange that opens for enrollment next week as a hallmark program of federal health care reform. The group includes Boone Hospital in Columbia, Mo.

The St. Louis Post-Dispatch reports that area health brokers and consultants expect BJC Healthcare will be excluded from the online insurance exchange because of the provider's high medical charges.

Anthem Blue Cross & Blue Shield in Missouri, the state's leading provider of individual health policies, has shared those details with brokers, but complete details of the Missouri exchange won't become known until just before the Oct. 1 enrollment start.

BJC also operates Barnes-Jewish Hospital and St. Louis Children's Hospital and is the largest employer in the St. Louis region.

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