Minnesota Senate Poised To Vote On Health Exchanges

Meanwhile, a New Hampshire survey finds few residents are aware of the health insurance marketplaces starting soon, and a fight is brewing in California over how "enrollers" for the state's exchange will be screened.

The Associated Press: Minn. Health Care Exchange Heads For Final Votes
The Minnesota House moved closer Thursday to final passage of a plan to create an online health insurance marketplace that would give 1.3 million residents a new way to get coverage, a key element of the federal health care law. The House debated the bill for about two hours in the afternoon, then recessed with plans to take it up again later in the evening. Majority Democrats managed to narrowly defeat a Republican effort to send the bill back to committee, in a vote that hinged on the issue of abortion (Condon, 3/15).

MPR News: Senate To Vote On Revised Exchange Bill
The Minnesota Senate is expected to vote on a revised health insurance exchange bill on Monday in what could be the last stop for the bill before the governor's desk. The exchange will provide a new online marketplace for more than a million Minnesotans to obtain health insurance starting in October. The legislation to create an exchange in Minnesota has been controversial from Day 1. As a cornerstone of President Barack Obama's health care law, Republicans have lined up against it, arguing that it's part of a government takeover of health care (Stawicki, 3/17).

The Associated Press: Survey: Few NH Residents Aware Of New Health Insurance Markets
As New Hampshire prepares for the new insurance markets required under the federal health care overhaul, a recent survey highlights how little residents agree on or even know about the looming changes. New Hampshire Voices for Health — a network of more than 40 organizations that advocates for affordable, quality health care — hired an independent consultant to design and administer an online survey seeking input on how the marketplace should operate in New Hampshire (3/16).

Los Angeles Times: Call For Screening Of Healthcare Enrollers Meets Resistance
State officials say they need 20,000 people for the job of signing up millions of Californians for health insurance in the coming months, but a battle is brewing over whether these workers should undergo background checks and fingerprinting (Terhune, 3/15).

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