Tag: health benefit exchange

Target to cancel health insurance for hundreds of Md. employees, directs them to exchanges

Hundreds — if not thousands — of Maryland Target employees will lose their health insurance benefits April 1 and are being directed instead to state exchanges created through President Obama’s health care reform law. The national retail giant announced a new company-wide policy this week to discontinue health insurance coverage for all store part-time employees.

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UPDATED 9/23: Oct. 3 session added; Fewer brokers than expected get certified to offer new health insurance under Obamacare

The Maryland Health Benefit Exchange is considering adding one more training session for health insurance brokers who want to sell policies through the exchange, after more brokers requested the training.

Some brokers who have attended certification sessions complained that the training is not doing enough to prepare them for the exchange because rates are not set and the computer models are not available to work with.

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Md. health insurance exchange to open this fall at cost of $200M

The cost of implementing Maryland’s new health insurance exchange program – a component of President Barack Obama’s signature health care law – will reach nearly $200 million as the exchange opens for business Oct. 1. The $200 million will pay for the program to get underway, and the state is kicking in more than $20 million of that, despite early assurances that federal funds would pay for implementation of the program.

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Proposal to cut health care funding for pregnant women sparks sharp opposition

The legislature’s budget analysts have proposed to phase out Medicaid coverage for pregnant women with incomes between 185% and 250% of the federal poverty line on the basis that these women will qualify for the state health exchange implemented under Obamacare.

But officials from Maryland’s $7 billion Medicaid program argue that this shift would jeopardize access to prenatal screenings and other health services that pregnant women and their babies need.

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Broad array of funding recommended for Health Benefit Exchange

The Health Benefit Exchange Board recommended Monday a broad based funding approach to pay for a federally mandated state health insurance program, now estimated to cost up to $30 million in 2014 and $60 million by 2016.

“The board is in agreement there should be some sort of a transactional fee, a broad based fee, and funding for the exchange that needs to come from multiple places to ensure sustainability and stability,” said Rebecca Pearce, Health Benefit Exchange executive director.

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Health exchange board ponders how to pay for key element of reform act

The state’s Health Benefit Exchange Board has five weeks to deliver recommendations to the legislature outlining how a federally mandated health insurance exchange program will be implemented and paid for. The report is due in late December to give the General Assembly time to pass legislation affecting the exchange, which is supposed to be up and running by January 2014.

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Doctors, business groups clash with consumer advocates on new health care agency

As Maryland seeks to implement a key element of federal health care reform, doctors, insurance brokers and business groups are advocating less government control, while consumer and health care advocates want more consumer protections and voice in a new state agency.

The groups testified Tuesday on an O’Malley administration bill to create a “health benefit exchange” as a new government agency to deal with health insurance.

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