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Pennsylvania Will not Set up State-Based Health Exchange

Gov. Tom Corbett says “no” to setting up a state-based health exchange.

By Eric Boehm | PA Independent

HARRISBURG – Gov. Tom Corbett said Wednesday afternoon that Pennsylvania would not pursue a state-based health exchange under the new federal health care law.

Instead, the state will allow the federal government to set up the exchange.  Pennsylvania is the 28th state to reject the option of having a state-based exchange.

[Exchanges will allow low-income people to determine if they qualify for Medicaid coverage and middle-income people to purchase private insurance plans.]

In a letter to Kathleen Sebelius, secretary of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Corbett said the department had not provided adequate information to address his questions about how the exchange would be setup and operate.

With regulations still to be finalized and with more forthcoming, too many unknowns remain for us to plan accordingly,” Corbett wrote. “Therefore, I’ve decided Pennsylvania will not move forward with establishing a state-based health insurance exchange at this time.

Christine Conkright, a spokeswoman for the governor, said the state still was determining what would happen to the $33-million grant from the federal government that was supposed to be used to help fund the establishment of the exchange.

In a statement, Corbett said he was still undecided about whether he would chose to expand Medicaid under the federal health care law — the other major decision that all states must make in the wake of the Supreme Court ruling that upheld the law but required states to opt-in to the Medicaid expansion.

Contact Eric Boehm at Eric@PAIndependent.com and follow @PAIndependent on Twitter.

— Edited by Kelly Carson, kcarson@watchdog.org

Tony Simek December 13, 2012 at 10:52 PM
States don't need Medicaid under the Obamacare premise. Everyone will be insured and hospitals and doctors will be paid for the services they provide. That's how BO sold his signature failure. We don't need Medicaid. We've lost Medicare. (As soon as people realize what Obamacare really is, they might act to correct this signature failure.)
Carol Ann December 14, 2012 at 01:30 AM
First, the Pa Independent is a biased, one-sided online newspaper that takes a view and will not support issues opposed to it's own self interests. ... For instance, it regularly publishes articles by writer, Melissa Daniels that insult Pennsylvania citizens' inteliegence. The Pa Independent, like most Pa newspapers, is admittedly and absolutely opposed to HB1776 (eliminating the School Property Tax), despite overwhelming support by 76 taxpayers groups across the state [and millions of property owners]. ... In May 2012, the Pennsylvania Newspapers Association testified at the Pa House Finance Committee Hearings that they want us to believe you will stop buying your daily newspaper IF HB1776 becomes law, eliminating the School Tax and adding a .07 per dollar sales tax to your paper. This .07 sales tax, they want you to believe will cost them jobs. ... Regarding the healthcare issue, Corbett may be following his party's role of condemming existing healthcare programs and then refusing to reform what's not working for most Pennsylvanians. ... At least, in this case, when he does nothing, the feds will pick up and get'er done anyway.

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