What is a Health Insurance Exchange?
A Health Insurance Exchange is a new marketplace that offers health insurance and coverage options to individuals, families and small employers. Under national health reform, states must have an Exchange in place by Jan. 1, 2014. Exchanges can be developed and implemented by the state or by the federal Department of Health and Human Services. Connecticut has chosen to develop a state-specific Exchange that fits our state’s unique needs and insurance market.
Will the Exchange make insurance more affordable?
For many Connecticut residents struggling to pay for insurance premiums, tax credits and cost-sharing reductions will help them pay premium costs in the Exchange. The federal tax credits will apply to individuals and families with incomes up to 400 percent of the federal poverty level ($94,200 for a family of four). In addition, small employers that offer health insurance to their workers may be eligible for the Small Business Health Care Tax Credit offered through the IRS to help cover premiums. You can learn more about the small business tax credit at the IRS website.
How is the Exchange funded?
The Exchange will operate at no cost to the state. It is funded by federal grant dollars through 2014.
Who oversees the Exchange?
The Connecticut Health Insurance Exchange was established as a quasi-public agency to satisfy requirements of the federal Affordable Care Act. The power of the Exchange is vested in a 14 member board. Lt. Governor Nancy Wyman is Chair of the Exchange.
In addition, four different advisory committees composed of a variety of stakeholders have been charged with providing the board with diverse perspectives on key initiatives and operations, providing opinions and recommendations.
What is the mission of the Exchange?
To increase the number of insured residents in our state, promote health, lower costs and eliminate health disparities.
How can I get involved?
Stakeholder involvement with the Exchange is highly encouraged. The website lists the time and place of all meetings and activities. Here you will also find notices of public webinars, agendas, supportive documents and meeting summaries. In addition, public comments are always welcome, and there are opportunities for consumer representatives on various committees.