Committee kills state-run health exchange, federal option to come

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November 29, 2012


By Zac Humphrey

LANSING, Michigan: In a 5-9 vote by the Michigan House of Representatives' Health Policy committee, the creation of a state-based health exchange was defeated on Thursday.[1]

Each state was given the deadline of December 14, 2012, to create their own exchange program. According to the Speaker of the House Jase Bolger (R), this issue will not be brought up again before that deadline.[1]

Gov. Rick Snyder has said that he hoped the non-profit, online, state-based exchange would be set up before the end of the year, but with the committee's recent vote this does not seem likely.[1][2]

Tea party activists and the conservative Americans for Prosperity spoke to their opposition of Obamacare, the name that the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act has come to be known. They claimed that for this reason, the state exchange should be opposed. They also made it clear that how representatives voted would be remembered.[3][1]

Many doctors and hospitals were in favor of a state-run exchange, saying that it would be better for the state to have as much control over the exchange as possible. This echoed the sentiments of the governor.[4]

This vote, however, does not stop the establishment of the health exchange in Michigan. The federal health care law provides that these health exchanges can either be a state-run, a federal-state partnership or a federally run program.[2]

This matter is not closed, though. If the state wants to make the exchange state-run in the future, it has the ability to do so.[1]

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