This October 17, 2009 photo illustrationThe bad news about ObamaCare just seems to get worse…
Four states that embraced the Affordable Care Act – Massachusetts, Nevada, Oregon and Maryland – have spent $474 million for state health care exchanges and each of these websites and programs have been abysmal failures. And the final price tag to fix or transition from these exchanges to the federal one could go much higher.
The federal government now has the difficult decision of spending more money to fix the existing exchanges, or to transition them over to the federal exchange at
So what have these four states done to try to fix the problems with their exchanges?
After an investigation by Oregon Governor John Kitzhaber and the resignation of five Cover Oregon board members, the board decided to abandon the state exchange and use
Nevada is undecided about whether to fix the existing exchange or switch to the federal one, but will decide in the next few weeks. An outside report concluded that trying to fix the flaws in the Nevada Health Link exchange would be a daunting task.
Lynn Etkins, vice chair of the Health Link board said last week, “The report seems overwhelming to me. And I really am not hearing anything that all of these issues are going to be resolved well before open enrollment so testing can be done.”
Maryland is trying to transition its flawed exchange to the same technology used by the state of Connecticut. If this fix doesn’t meet federal approval, Maryland would default to Massachusetts wants to do both: Build a new health care portal from scratch and plan a move to the federal exchange as a backup.
The Bay State has already spent $170 million on its exchange. It would cost an additional $120 million to fix it. That’s double the cost estimate to switch over to However, state officials believe the Obama Administration would provide federal funds to make the Massachusetts exchange work because it [RomneyCare] was the predecessor to ObamaCare.
Currently 36 states use the federal system at the portal, far more than was originally estimated. If these in-state exchange fixes don’t work, the number of states using the federal system (and the federal dollars spent on ObamaCare) will go even higher.