No Health Insurance Exchange for Florida

The Florida Senate announced Monday, December 10th, 2012 that there will be no health insurance exchange for Florida in January 2014, according to Sunshine State News.

Florida did not submit a letter to the Secretary of Health and Human Services by the November deadline indicating an intention to operate a state-based exchange for healthcare coverage by 2014. States have a Friday deadline for notifying the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services about their exchange plans. The next deadline is December 14, but it is unlikely they will give a decision by then either.

The Florida Senate launched a webpage on the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act to gauge the public’s response to healthcare reform and increase communication between citizens and their congressional representatives. The webpage will be updated frequently with information regarding healthcare proceedings, press releases, and news. It also has an FAQ section and Decisions Points section highlighting the main issues and questions.

Healthcare has been a contentious issue not only throughout the United States but particularly in Florida. Governor Rick Scott maintained that he would continue to reject certain aspects of the healthcare reform.

Obama’s reelection insured that the healthcare reforms would continue. The exchanges will be online marketplaces where consumers can shop for health insurance. If the states to not establish exchanges, it falls to the federal government. By not responding, this means Florida will default into the federal program called the Federally Facilitated Exchange. The state is also facing a decision whether to expand its Medicaid program with the federal government picking up the cost.

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