May 5, 2014

State Exchanges Planning For Future.

With the next open enrollment period only a few months away, state-run health insurance exchanges are working to address continuing problems and improve their offerings.
The Denver Post Share to FacebookShare to Twitter (5/5, Kane) reports that the state exchange is facing an uncertain financial future. It has spent a total of $100 million in Federal funds. The Northern Colorado Business Report Share to FacebookShare to Twitter (5/2, Armbrister) reported in greater detail that state officials are working on ensuring the long-term financial stability of their exchange. As the article noted, “Federal law dictates that state exchanges, including Connect for Health Colorado, must be financially sustainable by the end of 2015, when federal funding ends.” The Denver Post Share to FacebookShare to Twitter (5/2, Draper) reported that the state will allow insurance companies to extend health insurance plans not complying with the Affordable Care Act through next year. The Colorado Division of Insurance made the announcement on Friday.
In Hawaii, Pacific Business News Share to FacebookShare to Twitter (5/2, Blakely, Subscription Publication) reported in its “PBN Biz Blog” that the state has passed legislation requiring the Hawaii Health Connector to remain an independent non-profit organization while mandating enhanced transparency. The law also designates $1.5 million in assistance to help keep the exchange operating. State officials fear that, without a functioning state exchange, the state would lose the ability to continue implementing portions of the state’s Hawaii Prepaid Health Care Act of 1974.
The Honolulu Star-Advertiser Share to FacebookShare to Twitter (5/5, Consillo) reports that Hawaii Health Connector “collected 31,310 individual applications as of Saturday but was unable to enroll two-thirds of those applicants.”
In Massachusetts, the Boston Globe Share to FacebookShare to Twitter (5/5, Lazar) reports on John Polanowicz, Secretary of the Executive Office of Health and Human Services. He has been responsible for many aspects of the troubled state exchange, but has managed to avoid much of the “flak” that has been directed at other officials with state exchanges.
Original Posting from Bulletin Healthcare.