States may be on their own for health insurance exchange costs

United States House Committee on Energy and CommerceHealth care has been a hot issue for several years now. Since the days when the Affordable Care Act was being championed by the Obama Administration until now, there has been shortage of controversy surrounding health insurance. Now, the House of Representatives Subcommittee on Energy and Commerce has approved a number of bills that is likely to incite backlash from supporters of the health care reform law. One bill in particular targets health insurance exchanges.

Health insurance exchanges are one of the provisions of the Affordable Care Act. Their primary goal is to provide individuals and small groups the ability to purchase affordable insurance coverage and influence the market by pooling their purchasing power. All states are required to have a fully operational exchange program in place by 2014.

Health and Human Services has been providing funding to states that have begun the process of establishing an exchange. The money provided can be used for anything as long as it is used in the context of promoting the program. A bill passed by the Energy and Commerce subcommittee is aiming to bar those funding, leaving states to pay for these massive undertakings on their own.

Opponents of the bill have railed against its passing, saying that many states can scarcely afford the programs currently instituted. Cutting funding in this way will likely cripple a state’s ability to establish an insurance exchange within the allotted timeline.

The bill is not officially law as of yet, but has made a major step down the road of becoming one. Further hearings will be held later today as to the future of the bill.

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