Federal Dollars Set to Loan Funds for Health Plan Startups in States Ahead of Reform

February 23, 2012
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Posted in CMSCorporateHealthcare Policy & The Media

Posted in CMSCorporateHealthcare Policy & The Media

The federal government has given opponents of the ACA another reason to gripe: it has announced the formation of loans to initiate health plans on the new exchange platform in individual states. Think of the offering has a cooperative of sorts, built for the delivery of services within an exchange. CMS intends to oversee the adoption of at least one co-op per state via this method. Of course, emergency stopgaps are in place for the recipients of loans that may have problems satisfying the terms set forth by the feds; interest rates will be typically less than 1 percent.

Naturally, the behavior of such a healthcare delivery system is a reflection of the acronym used by the ACA’s program promoting it: the Consumer Operated and Oriented Plan. Proponents of the initiative are bullish on it, as the GOP-led legislature has incrementally cut initial CMS plan estimates earmarked for this purpose. Skeptics wonder if these loan startups will carry the heft needed to compete with established private insurers in the newly formed exchange marketplace in two years. The best intentions of non-profits in this case will have to be tempered by the new reality of such competition for healthcare consumer loyalty come 2014 under the law. Should be interesting to watch. | LINK