As administration gears up for 2014 launch of health exchanges, states still wrestling with policy choice

Published on November 21, 2012 at 3:32 AM · No Comments

Oklahoma has opted not to proceed with a state-based exchange or with the Medicaid expansion, while Republican governors from Tennessee, Utah and Iowa continue to press the Department of Health and Human Services for more guidance.

Politico: Next Up For Obamacare: Launching The Exchanges In 2014
Now that the elections saved the health care law from the threat of repeal, the Obama administration and its backers are turning their attention toward getting the law right -; before the next elections come around in 2014 (Haberkorn, 11/20).

Politico: HHS Looks To Step Up Role In Health Exchanges
The last thing the Obama administration wanted to do was come into a bunch of states and start running health insurance exchanges. But when the new insurance marketplaces open for business late next year, it's clear that the Department of Health and Human Services will have a much bigger job than it wanted (Millman, 11/20).

The Associated Press: State-Run Health Care Exchange Nixed
Oklahoma will not establish a state-run health insurance exchange under the federal health care law or expand its Medicaid eligibility to provide coverage to thousands of low-income, uninsured citizens, Gov. Mary Fallin announced Monday. The Republican governor's move puts Oklahoma's insurance exchange, required under the health care reform law, in the hands of the federal government (Murphy, 11/19).

Tulsa World (Oklahoma): Fallin Rejects Health-Care Exchange
The decision means Oklahoma will not do anything to accommodate the federal health-care law known as "Obamacare." It also means the state will skip an opportunity to help some 693,000 uninsured Oklahomans, 18.7 percent of the state population, get coverage through the federal government (Greene, 11/20).

Politico Pro: Utah Asks HHS About ACA Exchanges
Almost three years after President Barack Obama's health care law passed, Utah still doesn't know how its small-business exchange fits into the picture. On Monday, Utah Gov. Gary Herbert sent HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius a list of 10 "critical questions" about federal exchanges -; and he says he needs answers before making any decision about the future of Utah's exchange. Herbert asked Sebelius a variety of questions about a federal exchange's regulatory powers, costs and consumer relations. He asked what a federal exchange would cost the state, taxpayers and the private sector, and how the federal exchange would handle existing state laws. Herbert also wanted know how Utah's existing systems would "link" to the federal exchange (Millman, 11/19).

The Associated Press: Haslam Blames Feds For Delay In Health Care Choice
Republican Gov. Bill Haslam (of Tennessee) said Monday that a lack of information from the White House is delaying a decision about whether the state should run its own health insurance exchange under the new federal health care law. Haslam told reporters that President Barack Obama's administration has refused to address a series of questions about the health insurance marketplaces raised by Republican governors, including whether states would be able to create wellness-based incentives to encourage healthy behavior (Schelzig, 11/19).

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