Decision Time for States on Health Insurance Exchanges

Last Friday was the deadline for states to tell the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) whether they will run their own insurance exchange or will utilize the federal model. As part of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA), every state is required to make a Health Insurance Exchange available to their citizens. If they don’t wish to develop and operate one themselves, they will revert to a system developed by HHS.   While several states including California, Colorado, Maryland and Washington have embraced the health exchange concept and moved forward with development, others, such as Pennsylvania and Virginia have already said they will not develop their own exchange. As of now, it looks like the feds will be involved in over half of the states, running 24 outright and partnering with six more states in a joint effort.   A final report will be issued this week by HHS, on the status of each state’s exchange.