CAHOKIA, Il. (KMOX)-The legislative committee that is studying how to set up Illinois’ health benefits exchange under federal healthcare reform is running behind schedule, and it’s not clear when it will issue its report.
Committee co-chair, Alton Senator Bill Haine, says there are two basic reasons the report wasn’t issued as scheduled last Friday, “It’s insurance: A. B: it’s Illinois.”
Another big one he says is that there is no real template for creating an exchange that’s right for Illinois. He says Massachusetts has a very broad exchange that has very few insurance companies competing and has increasing premiums and costs. He says Utah is at the other end of the spectrum, with a very limited exchange.
“I believe in Illinois people want an exchange that’s set up to assist the consumer in purchasing affordable insurance that’s tailored to what they need. They want an exchange that clears away the verbiage and makes it simple.”
Haine believes the exchange should be run by consumers and healthcare professionals and be accountable to the general assembly.
There are reports the committee’s report could be released as soon as Thursday. Haine says it could even be a couple of weeks before its work is done.
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