Saturday, November 10, 2012

Deadline for State Exchanges Extended by White House...

"Obamacare is the law of the land..."

John Boehner, Speaker of the House, 11/09/12

Yes, it is...

As we chug toward the full implementation of the Affordable Care Act, one of the things scheduled to take place is the establishment of the state based health insurance exchanges. Originally, the ACA called for every state to set up their own exchanges. If the states didn't do so, the federal government would do it for them. As we headed toward first the Constitutionality of Obamacare being considered and approved by the Supreme Court and then the 2012 Presidential Election, many Republican Governors took a wait and see approach before acting. Other Governors, especially in southern states, simply announced they would not the exchanges. Period. As of late September, only 19 states had communicated their plans.

The original deadline was November 16th, 2012 for states to communicate their plans for their exchanges to the federal government. Yesterday, the Administration announced a few extensions. States just have to communicate their intentions by Nov. 16th to the federal government. They will have until December 14th to submit the actual plans for their exchange.

Another option exists for the States. They may "partner" with the federal government, in which case the two governing entities will work together on the setting up of an exchange. States wanting to go in this direction have until February 15th, 2013. There are also funds available from the federal government to help fund the setting up of the exchanges in the form of federal grants.

The exchanges are essentially health insurance "shopping malls" where in early 2014, some 12 million uninsured Americas are expected to purchase private health insurance.

You can read the short letter sent to the governors by HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius here...


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