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Churn Burn: Report outlines state strategies to assist with health insurance transitions
Date:1/28/2014

to provide these services. The plan addresses affordability but not continuous access to care. Massachusetts and Vermont are considering this option.

  • New programs for specific populations. One option under the ACA, the Basic Health Program, allows states to provide more generous financial and benefit protections for individuals making less than 200 percent of the federal poverty level. (This figure is adjusted based on family size, but, for a single-household consumer that income would be $22,980 and $39,060 for a family of three.) This option might be less attractive, the researchers write, in smaller states because it could reduce the number of people in the individual insurance market and might drive up prices for those remaining. Also, this plan won't be available until 2015. Minnesota is the only state currently pursuing a Basic Health Program for 2015.

  • Purchasing qualified health plans for Medicaid expansion populations. This is the reverse of the Basic Health Program and allows all newly eligible customers under the ACA regardless of population to choose from the same line of health care "products." This plan may require states to supplement qualified health plan benefits with additional benefits that would otherwise be available under Medicaid. While offering continuous access to care, the plan could be cost prohibitive to consumers and local and federal governments. Arkansas is implementing this plan, and a number of other states are considering this option.

  • Unifying plans and standards. This plan uses contract language with Medicaid and qualified health-plan providers to provide more seamless health care transitions, reducing the impact of coverage changes. Because states hold a greater influence over purchasers, continuous access to care is covered with this plan. However, this option does not address affordability as individual incomes change. Nevada and Maryland are exploring various approaches to this option.
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  • Contact: B. Rose Huber
    brhuber@princeton.edu
    609-258-0157
    Princeton University, Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs
    Source:Eurekalert

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