Many states feel they do not want to be an extension of the federal government when running health insurance exchanges.
Given the nature of politics, which can often seem mostly confrontational at the expense of the voters, many states figure they don’t want to be an extension of the federal government in running health insurance exchanges. This means that they refuse to set up an insurance exchange, despite the fact it is the law under the Affordable Care Act. Ultimately, the feds will roll into those states and proceed to build an exchange for them, and ultimately, they will be almost impossible to configure to local needs.
The whole point of these exchanges is to offer private insurance options to small business owners and families. Many federal politicians are promoting them (no surprise there), but their promotion makes sense, for the good of the voters. If people could see the forest for the trees, they would realize the issue is about the health and welfare of their voters, not their political points of view.
That being said, there are four state governors who flatly refuse to play ball, and another 15 or more that have not stated whether they will set an exchange up or not. It brings new meaning to the old adage that “The more things change, the more they remain the same.”
On closer inspection the purpose of the health insurance exchanges is to offer health insurance quotes to Americans at reasonable prices and provide access to millions more who are without insurance, by choice or by chance. There appears to be very little in the way of federal government control, as how they are to be setup is left to each state, depending on their needs. However, with politics in the mix, anything can happen.
Right now, there is an exchange in Utah that acts as a central information point for people to help them choose insurance that suits them. The governing rules appear to be fairly relaxed. Other states offer strict controls on their exchange members operate and what they offer. It’s a bit of a Catch-22 situation. If a state governor chooses to bypass creating their own exchange, they forego the chance to define how big a role they want to play when it comes to regulatory issues.
The bottom line may well be that health insurance quotes for Americans will be obtained at local exchanges setup by the federal government in states that refuse to participate in their creation, as a one-stop shopping experiences for everyone to get information and products. Not offering products suited to the local venue may make the state health insurance system hard to administer, and cost more to run.
Only time will tell what the final picture will look like when it comes to each state having its own health insurance exchange. For now, things are in organized chaos. They may smooth out when the politics of the situation settle down.
Clelland Green is with Benepath.com, a leader in providing health insurance quotes. Benepath provides individuals, families, and businesses with affordable health insurance quotes in just a few mouse clicks. To learn more, visit http://www.benepath.com.