Hatch Comments on Insurance Exchange Regulations

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Monday, the Department of Health and Human Services released its proposed regulatory framework for states to set up insurance exchanges under the new $2.6 trillion health law. Utah was only one of two states that had a functioning insurance exchange prior to the passage of the health care law and that would not meet the law’s requirements. U.S. Senator Orrin Hatch (R-Utah), Ranking Member of the Senate Finance Committee, issued the following statement:

“As we continue to closely examine this proposed regulation, one thing is clear – В despite all the rhetoric about state flexibility, the Obama Administration is once again pushing for a Washington-dictated approach. A 350 page regulation that uses 580 ‘musts’ and 811 ‘requires’ is not exactly a paragon for promoting state flexibility.

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“Utah has a successful exchange that was specifically designed to meet the unique requirements of the state. However, it is likely that it would not be considered compliant with the onerous and costly requirements of this regulation as written. Failure to meet the long list of federal requirements in establishing an exchange would allow the Secretary of Health and Human Services to set up a federal exchange in the state.

“This regulation is another example of how the Administration is not serious about providing state flexibility or reducing health care costs for American families. I have always said that Washington should allow states to be 50 laboratories of innovation to provide the solutions that meet the unique needs of their constituents. This is yet another ‘one-size-fits-all’ approach to healthcare that American people have overwhelmingly rejected.”

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