Thursday, November 1, 2012

Health Insurance Exchange Update: Thursday, November 1

The election is just days away, and the health insurance exchange deadline just two weeks away. States all across the U.S. are putting the final touches on their programs. Today we look at Tennessee, Idaho, and California.

In TennesseeRequirements of the Affordable Care Act of 2010 continue to be implemented, but one provision on the horizon that has customers, insurance companies and regulators concerned is the formation of state health insurance exchanges where individuals and small businesses can purchase health insurance coverage. Everything from the way health insurance is purchased to the amount of risk insurers will soon change, and the state wants to make sure that all of these last minute glitches are taken care of, and above all that the insurance is the best quality and affordable for everyone.  

This week in Idaho, a panel made up of 13 members not only urged the Governor to create a state based exchange, but also gave him a list of recommendations. The 50-page report issued by the group includes data collected by the working group over a series of meetings, which took place over the last few months At the Oct. 26 meeting, the group debated the pros and cons of a state-based exchange, but chose that option over a federally mandated alternative. Panel members felt a federal exchange could be more costly, and less flexible. The governor received the list yesterday and is currently reviewing it before making a decision.  

California is setting up an exchange that is not only state based, but officials say that each region will have a specific plan. The exchange, branded Tuesday as Covered California, will negotiate with insurers for the best rates and will assist consumers and small businesses in choosing a plan by separating them into five categories based on cost and level of benefits. The state is hoping the more options, the better and are doing everything they can to minimize raising the cost of new insurance policies. 

Want to learn more about the health insurance exchange? 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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