NCMS Convenes Meeting with Benefits Exchange Stakeholders

Members of a wide variety of healthcare and business stakeholders came together on Thursday at the NCMS headquarters to discuss the current legislative proposals to form a state health benefit exchange. Insurance Commissioner Wayne Goodwin attended with other top staff from the Department of Insurance (DOI) to discuss the timeline for development of a health benefits exchange, and the availability of federal funding. The group agreed to communicate support for State rather than federal control over an exchange that is developed for North Carolina

The Obama administration has indicated that unless NC moves quickly to develop its own health benefits exchange, it will invoke provisions of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA) that permit the federal government to do so. Enabling legislation passed the NC House during the long session and is awaiting committee hearings in the NC Senate. 

The DOI has already received Level 1 funding from Washington and hopes to apply for Level 2 funding by the June 2012 deadline. This funding provides essential staff and consulting services to help NC form, organize and launch the new state based exchange without having to find general appropriations in the state budget. The NCMS supports the initiative to apply for this funding and capitalize on the opportunity to build a robust system for patient access to health insurance without burdening scarce state resources.


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