Health Benefit Exchanges and the Affordable Care Act
Author: Greg DeBor, Paula Gallo, Jordan Battani
Due to the Affordable Care Act, federal health reform requires the creation of health benefit exchanges that rationalize and simplify information about and access to health coverage for millions of Americans. Health Insurance Exchanges must also serve as the single entry point for eligibility determination and verification for enrollment in government sponsored coverage and subsidy programs.
In September 2010, 48 states and the District of Columbia received funding1 to begin the planning activities to build and deploy Health Insurance Exchanges (Exchanges) — a central component of the health care coverage reforms mandated in the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA) of 2010. While the implementation details of the ACA continue to be challenged, debated and refined, the deadline for implementation of the Exchanges is still set for 2014. Exchange planners and regulators at the state and federal level are beginning to move forward on the mandated objectives in order to hit this aggressive deadline.
Once operational, the health benefit exchanges must also be self-sustaining, which means they must offer a customer and supplier value proposition that warrants the imposition of service fees. Meeting the design and mandate challenges imposed by the Affordable Care Act efficiently and effectively and at the same time offering value-added service and support to customers and suppliers is critical to establishing sustainable long term Exchange solutions.
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