"If there is a message, it is 'we're here to stay,'" said analyst Michelle Oxman.
Executives at ikaSystems, a Massachusetts-based company that has been helping insurers operate on the public exchanges, say policy carriers are banking on the exchanges to become a permanent fixture of the broader health insurance market.
"We aren't betting against the likelihood that CMS and the administration are able make the exchanges 'sticky,' and, perhaps more importantly, our health plan customers believe that the move to individual markets and exchanges is here to stay," Brian Kim, senior VP for account management at ikaSystems, said Monday.
He said there is little doubt that the exchanges have taken hold, but uncertainty lingers about how the exchanges will evolve over time. "The question is really about what form they will take based on the forces that support, contest and seek to shape the exchanges."
"On that note, we necessarily take a pragmatic view, individual adoption could be modest or massive, small businesses could flock to them or move into private exchanges, the regulatory and administrative requirement changes could be minor or major. All we can do," said Kim, "is help our customers manage the ambiguity by fostering nimbleness and flexibility through solution design and modularity."