Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Health Insurance Exchange Update: Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Mississippi State Flag
It may seem that more states are coming around to setting up exchanges. Though they may not be the biggest supporters of the law, they realize that it is the law. Mississippi is one of these states. They are done with their exchange marketplace according to the Insurance Journal. Mississippi Insurance Commissioner Mike Cheney said that the marketplace is set up and will be ready for Mississippians to be insured.  Chaney believes that nothing more needs to be done. Many people, including Gov. Phil Bryant want Cheney to stop working on the marketplace. But Cheney, who is not a fan of the law, said this is the law until further notice.

But other states are left in complex situations and uncooperative state officials regarding the exchanges.

Alaska will be another state that has opted not to create health exchanges. According to Juneau Empire, Alaska Gov. Sean Parnell stated that the state will instead allow the federal government to set up the exchanges. Gov. Parnell feels that his state should not be spending taxpayer money when “so much uncertainty exists about how to implement it.” Alaska was one of the plaintiffs in the lawsuit against the health care law. Chair of the Senate Health, Education and Social Services Committee, Sen. Bettye Davis, is not thrilled about what the governor had to say regarding the exchanges. She much rather had the exchanges be “local” rather than having the federal government use their plan. But the governor’s philosophy is crystal clear by saying that federal mandates “should be paid by the federal government.” 

Indiana Gov. Mitch Daniels is stuck in a quagmire with the setting up exchanges for the state. Ventura County Star reports in his second term and unable to run again for office, Gov. Daniels is now talking with his potential successors to see whether or not he should set up the exchanges for the state. States must send in a plan to the federal government by November 16. Gov. Daniels does not want to put other governors in a bind when the law goes into action in 2014. Daniels will be meeting with Libertarian Rupert Boneham, Democrat John Gregg, and Republican Mike Pence to figure out what they want to do with setting up the exchanges. 

Michigan’s Republican lawmakers have decided that they will not act on whether or not to accept federal aid. According to the Detroit News, the government gave Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder $9.8 million to set up the state’s exchange marketplace. But the House Republicans have elected not to act on the issue when they meet today. The Republican controlled Senate allowed the governor to take the money but with the need of bipartisan support, the House decided to go the opposite way. The state cannot spend the money unless they have legislature approval. 

This November, the Health Insurance Exchange Congress will be held November 13-14, 2012 in Chicago, IL.  Here, state officials and health plans with the only opportunity to come together to discuss PPACA and strategize on how to make this a successful opportunity for all.  For more information on this year's agenda, download the program here.  As a reader of this blog, when you register to join us and mention code XP1710BLOG, you'll receive 15% off the standard rate

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