Friday, October 5, 2012

Health Insurance Exchange Update: Friday, October 5

The first presidential debate took place this week, and while many states are finalizing their programs, some states are still deciding which health insurance program is right for them.

New Jersey has until the 16th of November to determine whether it will create its own marketplace or not and Senator Christie seems to be in no rush to make a decision. “I won’t make a decision until I have to. I don’t have to make one until the 16th, so I want to make sure I’m as fully informed as I can be,” he said. “That’s ultimately our call.It’s an executive branch call and we’ll make the call,” said Christie. Part of the bill has been cleared by the senate, as of Thursday 21 to 17. However, some are still arguing that patients will not benefit from the bill. 

Vermont has approved six insurance plans, and recently denied dental coverage to the Vermont Health Benefits Exchange. However, the premiums, which won’t be decided until next summer, are causing concern for many. The board is concerned that two of the six plans will leaveVermont’s low-income residents with high health care costs in times of greatestneed. At the end of the meeting, board member Al Gobeille proposed that the board hire a professional to analyze current access to dental care, how it is financed and how it is organized. By November 15th they are expected to have an outline.

The state of Washington decided to prepare early when considering which health insurance program would work best for them. They predict that their program will be used as an example when other states create their federal exchanges. It will have the one-stop function for qualifying and applying for Medicaid, the children’s state health insurance program, an insurance plan, cost-sharing reductions and tax credits, as well asa shopping tool to compare plans and coverage. Many states are comparing the exchange to travel sites because there will be options that suit the needs of each individual.

Want to learn more about the health insurance exchange? 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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