Although the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, a federal bill which supports more affordable and available health care, has already been passed, many are still wondering how and when this bill will start to take effect.
The Center for Health Policy at IU-Purdue University Indianapolis has recently proposed a Hoosier Health Insurance Exchange to be run by a quasi-independent state agency called the Hoosier Health Commission.
The Hoosier Health Insurance Exchange — proposed by the Center for Health Policy director Eric Wright — offers people an exchange that intends to control costs, increase access to care and improve its overall insurance market.
The Hoosier Health Commission will manage the Exchange.
According to the Exchange, the commission will consist of 15 members with specialized knowledge of Indiana’s health insurance and health policy issues.
These members will include an Indiana insurance commissioner, a secretary of Family and Social Services Administration, a health economist and others.
As Massachusetts, California and Utah have already done, Indiana would provide all Hoosiers with a similar type of Exchange that correlates with the Hoosier Health Commission state agency to ensure people a proper and well-thought-out health care proposal.
If executed it will reduce the risk of interference by the federal government, according to the Exchange.
The importance of a state-run Exchange is a key factor in the proposal.
“Having a handle on health care tasks lays a stronger foundation for the state to be able to make changes in the delivery system and how it operates,” Wright said. “It also provides additional initiatives to reduce health care costs.”
People’s fear of a new Exchange comes from ignorance people have on the issue due to the complexity and vivid explanation given to citizens while the PPACA was being passed, Wright said.
“There is quite a big political disagreement about whether this is a good idea or not,” he said. “Pollsters on both sides of the aisle are telling us that most people are nervous about reform, but when they are spoken to in a language that they understand, 80 plus percent tend to support it.
It’s simply a matter of time for people to get used to the idea. Change is scary, especially when you don’t understand everything that is changing. We are trying to educate people about what has been proposed.”
While acknowledging the vital importance of lowering the cost of health care, the Exchange also maintains that the best way to initiate the new proposal must involve an increase in taxes.
“In contrast to other fundraising strategies, taxation can readily support public health and other community-based initiatives,” according to the Exchange.
This proposition could arguably be the most controversial issue for citizens when they are determining whether or not to support the Exchange.
On Feb. 7, Gov. Mitch Daniels collaborated with 20 other governors from around the country to write a letter to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services stating that the PPACA should be repealed and that the bill was highly flawed. The letter is available on Daniels’ website.
“We face the decision of whether to participate in the bill by operating state exchanges, or to let the federal government take on that task, if the bill remains in effect in 2014,” the letter said.
The governors stated that because of the flaws in the PPACA, “We do not wish to be the federal government’s agents in this policy in its present form.”
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