Evergreen Health Cooperative Inc. of Maryland announced earlier this month that it is withdrawing from the Affordable Care Act exchanges next year, leaving only five co-ops in operation. The co-op will not offer or renew individual health policies in 2017.

“After many months of working closely with Evergreen management, leadership at the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, and outside investors to find a workable solution, we have run out of time to meet the deadline for a January 1 effective date,” said Maryland Insurance Commissioner Al Redmer Jr. “We remain committed to a viable, competitive insurance industry in Maryland.”

This action will force 6,000 customers serviced by the co-op to be automatically enrolled in new plans. The co-op was awarded $65.5 million in taxpayer-funded loans in 2012.

Of the 23 co-ops originally created under Obamacare, 18 have failed including Evergreen Health, as well as co-ops serving New Jersey, Illinois, Connecticut, Arizona, Colorado, Kentucky, Michigan, Nevada, New York, Ohio, South Carolina, Tennessee, Louisiana, Utah, a co-op that served both Iowa and Nebraska, and two co-ops that served Oregon.

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