Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Mr. Obama Wins; States Have 9 Days To Create Health Exchanges

So much for the mantra of "Repeal!", eh? Governor Perry in Texas ought to be particularly embarrassed that he has put millions of his own citizens at risk of not receiving federally-supported benefits in the provision and purchasing of more affordable and more comphrensive health care insurance and reimbursement.

Many of the nation's largest law firms have spent almost no time explaining to clients and potential clients what full implementation of the ACA of 2010 will mean to them. Thta is unfortunate -- as many of them bought into the notion that Mr. Romney couldn't lose in 2012. I don't yell at people for their mistakes -- but it is appropriate that they pay for them.

Time to pay up -- per Bloomberg reporting, this very morning:
. . . .State officials who held off implementing some aspects of the 2010 Affordable Care Act now face pressure to make decisions almost immediately. They have nine days to advise the federal government how they plan to manage state-run exchanges created by the law to provide medical coverage to the uninsured, or face a de facto U.S. takeover of their insurance markets. . . .
Thirty-four states have accepted at least two grants from the federal government to start planning an exchange, according to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. That puts about 20 states in a position to build an exchange or partner with the federal government on one, in addition to the 13, plus the District of Columbia, who have already said they’ll run their own.

The rest “have either explicitly said ‘no’ or have taken so few steps that you can’t really see them shifting quickly enough to play an active role,” said Alan Weil, executive director of the National Academy for State Health Policy, which assists states implementing the health law, in an interview. . . .

“The message to governors is the verdict is now in,” said Ron Pollack, executive director of Families USA, a consumer advocate that backs the law. “The Affordable Care Act is moving forward. Either they help cooperate with its implementation, or people in their state could be left out in the cold. . . .”

[A]ll but 13 governors had taken a wait-and-see approach. Now those that “thumbed their nose” at the president must quickly reassess, said Mississippi Insurance Commissioner Mike Chaney, a Republican who said he will submit a plan for his state’s exchange by the Nov. 16 deadline. . . .

We will keep you posted, but this result -- a mad scramble by the various partisan and thus recalcitrant states -- was an entirely avoidable result. The citizens of these states -- Texas in particular -- ought to demand better of their governors.

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