Paying for North Dakota`s Health Care Exchange | VideoJessica Roose | 7/25/2012
Figuring out the most cost affective way to set up healthcare exchanges under the affordable healthcare act is frustrating for state lawmakers and it doesn`t seem to be getting easier any time soon.
"I can not find a compelling enough reason for this state to not be Doubting Thomases on these PPACA exchanges," said North Dakota Insurance Commissioner Adam Hamm.
A health care exchange is designed to give individuals who don`t have insurance the opportunity to purchase coverage at the competitive rates.
"If there are exchanges, we`re going to pay for them. Maybe not the state government but the state people are," said District 18 Representative Eliot Glassheim.
Glassheim was of the opinion that North Dakota could do a better job of containing costs and running an exchange.
Hamm disagreed, saying the federal government writes all the rules that govern an exchange and the state would enforce them and pick up the bill.
"We should make the federal government prove completely that these things can be financially successful that they can at least pay for themselves before the state financially commits to any of it."
Hamm said North Dakota isn`t the only state struggling to find answers to healthcare exchange questions. Thirty five other states have either said they will not set up a state based exchange or have not made a decision.
North Dakota and all the other undecided states will have to make a decision by November 16th.
The state will also have to decide on an essential health benefits package which must include ten benefit categories which range from emergency services and hospitalization to pediatric services, including oral and vision care.