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Decision Time Is Running Out For Tennessee

Decision TimeOne of the cornerstones of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act of President Obama is the creation of a state-based health insurance exchange. This mandate is one of those provisions that stirred opposition of the health care reform law in some states.

By January 1, 2014, when the health care reform law is fully implemented, each state should have their health insurance exchange set up and running. States that are unable to comply with the law would have to let the federal government run an exchange for them.

The health insurance exchanges are basically an online marketplace where individuals and small business firms can shop and buy affordable Tennessee health insurance plans. The plans offered in the exchange would be standardized. It will offer ten core health care benefits that will be determined by each state. The administration believes that this exchange will increase competition among participating insurance companies and as a result will drive the premiums down. Since the benefits are standardized, people will simply focus on the cost and quality of the provided health care services.

In order to ensure that the health insurance exchanges will move forward, the federal government had given grants to Tennessee and other states. Unlike other states that have made up their minds about the issue, Tennessee has not made a decision. Tennessee leaders are still weighing the pros and cons of the state-based exchange.

Despite their stand, Tennessee is still taking steps in meeting federal requirements regarding the exchange. Public hearings have been started to ask people about the essential benefits that they want Indiana health insurance plans to have.

Currently, many states are just waiting like Tennessee; decisions will be made after the November elections. If the health care reform law survives the presidential election, then Tennessee will have to hustle to create their state-based health insurance exchange or allow the federal government to run the exchange for them.

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