Connecticut received $107 million in federal dollars to begin setting up a health insurance exchange. The state is one of eight in the nation that has progressed the furthest in setting up an exchange, which could open in 2014.
An exchange is a place where people could shop for health insurance. According to the Christian Science Monitor’s guide to health exchanges, “they’re an attempt to inject some retail competition into a marketplace that today is not exactly teeming with bargains.” The Supreme Court so states are now moving forward with the exchanges.
The $107 million dollars transferred from Washington D.C. to Connecticut will be used to hire staff and consultants to help get the exchange running. Much of the funding will be used for informational technology services that would, according to the Health and Human Services Department, be used to check “eligibility, enrollment, and information exchange among individuals, employers, insurance carriers, and state and federal government agencies.”
“We continue to support states as they move forward building an Exchange that works for them,” said Secretary Kathleen Sebelius, of Health and Human Services. “Thanks to the health care law, Americans will have more health insurance choices and the ability to compare insurance plans.”
The states that received new grants include California, Connecticut, Hawaii, Iowa, Maryland, Nevada, New York, and Vermont.