Health Insurance Exchanges Spending Surpasses $2 Billion

According to a report by InformationWeek earlier this month, the federal government has exceeded the $2 billion mark in spending to help establish infrastructure for health insurance exchanges.

According to a report by InformationWeek earlier this month, the federal government has exceeded the $2 billion mark in spending to help establish infrastructure for health insurance exchanges (HIX).

Arkansas, Colorado, Kentucky, Massachusetts, Minnesota, and the District of Columbia are the latest to receive Exchange Establishment Grants, and that combined $224 million is what pushed the new overall total spent on HIX to approximately $2.2 billion. According to the InformationWeek article, “the total amount awarded to date in both Level One and Level Two Exchange Establishment grants is $1,899,469,108. The amount awarded to date in Exchange Innovator grants is $249 million, and the total awarded in Exchange Planning grants is $49 million.”

Considering that it was only 5 months ago when the US Department of Health and Human Services announced that it had hit the $1 billion mark, this new milestone isn’t completely shocking. However, many states are still hesitant to take action, as outlined by this Kaiser Family Foundation map.

Just this week in New Jersey, the General Assembly granted final legislative approval to a measure sponsored to implement a health insurance exchange; the bill currently awaits action by Governor Chris Christie. In less than a month, Missouri voters will decide whether to move forward with an implementation of their own HIX. And while no formal announcement has been made in Pennsylvania, it looks as though the state will not be taking any action to set up an HIX. They are poised to join Alaska, Florida, Louisiana, Maine, New Hampshire, South Carolina, South Dakota, and Texas, all of which have determined that they will not create their own HIX.

States that either opt not to create their own HIX or that do not sufficiently prove by January 1, 2013, that they are on track to have a fully operational HIX by January 1, 2014, will be authorizing the federal government to run their state’s HIX.

Around the Web

Health Insurance Exchange Spending Hits $2 Billion [Information Week]

Ensuring the Long-Term Viability of Health Insurance Exchanges [The Health Care Blog]

State Action Toward Creating Health Insurance Exchanges [Kaiser Family Foundation]