Montana U blames Obamacare for not being able to pay student health insurance claims

Plan is losing money for the first time

Officials expect student premiums to rise

Montana University system officials have reported that Obamacare has caused its student health insurance plan to lose so much money that it cannot pay claims.

Due to the recession, older, sicker students have been enrolling in the school and the health plan, while younger, healthier ones have left it for their parents' insurance, according to an article in Montana Public Radio.

This combination, officials say, threatens the plan that has provided affordable coverage for those students not on their parents' insurance. 

"We weren't able to pay even claims let alone administrative costs," said University System Benefits Director Connie Welsh. 

Welsh said the plan has been losing money for the first time under Obamacare, and that she expects plan premiums to have to rise because of it.

Other options include the school trying to run its own insurance plan — rather than partnering with Blue Cross — or completely canceling student health insurance altogether, sending uninsured students to the exchanges. 

The commissioner of higher education is expected to decide what to do about the problem in February. 

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