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Michael Conroy / AP

Anthem is withdrawing almost all of its individual Affordable Care Act health plans in Virginia, the company said Friday. However, all counties in the state will still have an ACA insurance option because Optima Health, an insurer owned by hospital system Sentara Healthcare, is expanding.

Why it matters: Anthem continues its piecemeal retreat from the ACA exchanges. The Blue Cross Blue Shield brand has now substantially left the marketplaces in California, Georgia, Indiana, Nevada, Ohio and Wisconsin. However, Anthem is keeping a minimal presence off the exchanges in those states, in case it decides to come back.

Update: This story has been updated to note that Optima’s expansion will save Virginia from having counties with no insurance options. An earlier version of this story raised the possibility that Anthem’s exit could have expanded the number of U.S. counties without ACA insurers.

Go deeper

First look: New climate website touts Biden's actions

Illustration: Annelise Capossela/Axios

What is a White House to do when it is stuck between slow-moving climate legislation and a fast-approaching climate summit where its credibility is on the line? Unveil a new White House climate website, of course, showcasing its actions to date as well as ongoing work.

Why it matters: The Biden administration, which shared the site first with Axios, focuses it around the actions taken by the White House National Climate Task Force.

30 mins ago - Health

White House unveils plan to "quickly" vaccinate kids ages 5-11

Charles Muro, 13, is inoculated at Hartford Healthcare's mass vaccination center at the Connecticut Convention Center in Hartford, Connecticut. Photo: Joseph Prezioso/AFP via Getty Images

The White House on Wednesday released its plan to vaccinate children between the ages of five and 11, pending authorization from the Food and Drug Administration of the first COVID-19 shot for that age group.

The big picture: The White House said it has secured enough vaccine supply to equip more than 25,000 pediatric and primary care offices, hundreds of school and community health clinics, as well as tens of thousands of pharmacies, to administer the shots.

37 mins ago - Sports

Where it stands: Weed policies by U.S. sports league

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

With public support for marijuana legalization nearing unanimity, and more athletes using cannabis to treat pain, the four major U.S. sports leagues continue to reduce restrictions and punishments.

Driving the news: NBA players won't be subject to random marijuana testing this season, an extension of an agreement between the league and its players' union that began ahead of the 2020 Orlando restart.

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