Cigna, Oscar Health expanding cobranded plans into Illinois

Cigna and Oscar Health are expanding their cobranded health plans in Illinois, the companies announced on Thursday.

The plans, which target small businesses, will be available in Chicago, as well as DuPage, Kane, Lake and McHenry counties. The expanded footprint is pending regulatory approval.

“Chicago small businesses have endured a lot throughout the pandemic, and many have proven to be resilient in keeping their doors open. Through our partnership with Oscar, we are providing more choices for affordable, predictable and simple health coverage to small businesses at a time when they need it most,” said Brian Marsella, Midwest market president for Cigna, in a statement.

COVID-19 has led more small businesses to prioritize health benefits, with recent a Cigna + Oscar survey finding that 88% of such companies are prioritizing employee health, and 66% say health insurance is more important to their budgets than it was prior to the pandemic.

RELATED: Cigna, Oscar Health bringing cobranded plan for small businesses to Connecticut

The plans, which are available for companies with between zero and 50 employees, are built on Cigna’s provider network in tandem with Oscar’s technology stack.

The partner plans have been scaling up its footprint at a rapid clip, expanding into additional areas of California and into Connecticut.

“Small businesses have had to make extremely difficult decisions since the beginning of the pandemic, and continue to face an uphill battle with the ongoing threat of the COVID-19 variants,” said Louis DeStefano, head of the small group business and senior vice president of growth at Oscar, in a statement. “Cigna + Oscar is designed to help these small businesses provide high-quality care to their employees at an affordable cost that allows them to continue operating.”

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