Senate in Oregon gives its last minute approval to state health insurance exchange

The Oregon Senate has given its overwhelming last minute approval for a measure toward the implementation of the state’s online health insurance exchange marketplace, which is the heart of the Obama administration’s healthcare reform and will provide individuals and small businesses a place to shop for coverage. The vote on Monday was for a measure that was championed by Governor John Kitzhaber, and was passed by 55-5 for the rules that will govern the exchange. This will give the state the ability to build an insurance marketplace ahead of the…

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Washington is one step closer to building its own health insurance exchange

Washington lawmakers have passed a bill that opens the way for a health insurance exchange to take root in the state. The bill will set up rules that will help the state prepare for the construction of the exchange and govern its operation for the foreseeable future. Legislators believe that this will help the state fully comply with the Affordable Care Act of 2010 and will help it adhere to federal deadlines. Currently, the exchange is expected to be fully operational by January 2014. The rules established by the bill…

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Oklahoma legislative panel suggests building a health insurance exchange

A legislative panel commissioned to determine whether Oklahoma should pursue building its own health insurance exchange system has finally reached a conclusion. The panel released a report to the state’s Legislature recommending action be taken on building an exchange in order to avoid the federal government taking charge and establishing its own. The state has had a rocky history with the concept of the exchange and has been slow to adopt legislation that would make the program possible. The panel is now stressing the importance of building an adequate system…

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Cutting individual insurance mandate could have dire consequences for health care, says RAND

A new study from the RAND Corporation, a non-profit institution that provides research and analysis for various political endeavors, suggests that axing the mandatory health insurance provision from the Affordable Care Act could be a costly mistake. The health care law has generated a large amount of controversy for its various provisions that introduce dramatic changes to the nation’s tax, insurance and medical services structure. None of these provisions have been quite as contentious as the health insurance mandate. The mandate, and the law as a whole, will be heading…

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Final simplification rules for insurance policies issued by the Obama administration this week

The Obama administration has issued the final rules regarding how insurance companies will make policies easier to understand this week. The government has been working on the rules since the passing of the Affordable Care Act in 2010. The endeavor aims to make the language of insurance policies more clear and straightforward. There have been some delays in the initiative as insurance groups asserted that some policies could not be simplified because they did not cover simple circumstances. Nonetheless, the final rules have been issued this week, requiring all insurers…

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Department of Health and Human Services issues legal briefing regarding Affordable Care Act

As the Affordable Care Act continues its slow march toward the Supreme Court, the Department of Health and Human Services has issued a legal brief regarding the matter. The federal health care law has come under fire largely due to one of its provisions. The provision requires all U.S. citizens to purchase some kind of health insurance. 26 states have come together to combat this provision, along with some of the other aspects of the law. The HHS claims that if the individual insurance mandate is declared unconstitutional, the Supreme…

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Minnesota lawmakers clash over recommendations from health insurance exchange advisory task force

Legislators are clashing in Minnesota over recommendations regarding a health insurance exchange program. The recommendations come from a task force that had been commissioned by Governor Mark Dayton. The task force’s goal was to determine the necessity of a health insurance exchange program for the state. According to the group’s recommendations, the program would bring significant benefits to residents and could help improve the economy of the state, which is why the task force is now supporting plans to build and exchange. The task force was comprised of some of…

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Texas health insurance waiver denied by the federal government

The federal government has announced that it has not approved Texas’s request for exclusion from a new law that places limitations on allowable amount of overhead spending by health insurers. The law from which Texas wanted to be excluded is one of the changes made in 2010 as a part of the Affordable Care Act for federal health care. Officials in Texas are claiming that this part of the Act is unconstitutional. It is called the medical loss ratio requirement, and it states that health insurance companies must spend a…

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Americans speculate regarding the outcome of the Supreme Court’s decision regarding the health care reforms

According to a poll performed by the Kaiser Family Foundation, the majority of people in the United States believe that the Supreme court will rule against the law at the center of the health care reform that would require Americans to purchase health insurance, and that it will deem this law to be unconstitutional. Slightly less than one third of Americans believe that the Affordable Care Act provision of the healthcare overhaul will be upheld by the Supreme Court. When the participants in the poll were asked whether or not…

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Idaho legislators debate health insurance exchange issues as new legislative session begins

The Idaho Legislature convened earlier this month for its latest legislative session and one of the main topics of discussion is whether the state will build a health insurance exchange program. The state has received a $20 million federal grant to help build the exchange, but legislators have yet to accept the funds as they still remain divided on the issue. Idaho is one of 22 states that have not reached a conclusion on what to do about an insurance exchange yet. Health insurance exchanges are part of the Affordable…

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