The state’s website has managed to sign up more residents than had been anticipated.
The Idaho health insurance exchange has beat even its own targets throughout its first open enrollment period, after having managed to draw 76,061 residents of the state to sign up for their plans.
This achievement was so great that it represents almost double the initial targets that the exchange had made.
Ahead of the open enrollment period that lasted six months, the federal government had predicted that 40,000 people would enroll in health insurance on the Idaho exchange. However, when compared to those forecasts, which some had called ambitious in the first place, it is clear that the website did far better than officials could have known. According to the exchange’s executive director, Amy Dowd, “It’s very exciting, very, very encouraging that we are on the right path.” She went on to point out that “Idahoans are interested in getting insurance for themselves and their families.”
The health insurance exchange in Idaho was the result of considerable debate in that state.
The YourHealthIdaho.org exchange website was launched in the state following two years of debate that went on in the legislature. Governor Butch Otter was behind the effort from the beginning. That said, it was clearly not without its opponents, which included the Russ Fulcher (R-Meridian), the Senate Majority Caucus Chairperson. Fulcher is currently challenging Governor Otter within the GOP primary.
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Those who were opposed to the exchange in the state were nearly all those who had also been adverse to the health care reform as a whole. This, despite the fact that choosing not to run its own insurance exchange would have forced the federal government to operate the website on the state’s behalf.
The online marketplace in Idaho is currently in operation with the support of millions of dollars in grant funding from the federal government. That said, in 2016, the state will need to be able to become self-supporting and will have to rely on fees in order to keep itself operational. By law, the state cannot spend its own funds on the health insurance exchange.