States don't know how they will pay for year 2 of Exchanges

June 23, 2014

More than a dozen states decided to build new health insurance marketplaces under Obamacare. Now, they need to figure out how to pay the costs of running those massive websites.

The Affordable Care Act provided federal grant funding for states to get their new web portals up and running. The Obama administration doled out $4.6 billion in grants to states launching their own marketplaces. But in 2015, they are on their own, leaving some states to question their decision. Oregon has already announced the move to abandon their site and move to the site. Mass. is debating this issue.

Most state exchanges plan to rely, in least in part, on charging health insurers a fee for selling coverage. So far, the fees set for 2015 range from 1 percent of the monthly premium in the District of Columbia and Vermont to 3.5 percent in Minnesota. Some states also charged fees in 2014, in order to begin generating revenue further in advance, while others are implementing them for the first time. So what impact do you think THIS will have on future premiums? And I thought this was the AFFORDABLE care act? So far the insurance is not very affordable (unless you are getting a gov't handout to help pay the exorbitant premiums.

Other options include taxing insurance companies, looking at other sources of state money (good luck with that in Illinois!) or getting CREATIVE: There is at least one state thinking quite outside the box when it comes to paying for their exchange. Connecticut is exploring opening a side business — and using the revenue to reduce the fee that it currently plans to charge insurers. read more...

Paying for Year 2 of Exchanges