If Affordable Care Act Remains Intact, N.H.’s “One-Stop Shop” Will Be Run By Feds

Correction: In the last paragraph, the author initially referred to Alabama, rather than Louisiana, as a state that has not created a state-run health insurance exchange.

Remember back in 2009 and 2010 when President Obama would talk about that “one-stop shop” piece of his health care bill, in which health insurance customers could go to a single place to view a comparison of health insurance plans’ costs and benefits? Should that piece of the Affordable Care Act remain intact after the Supreme Court hands down its decision on the ACA’s constitutionality this month, New Hampshire will be forced to implement a federally-run health insurance exchange, in accordance with the federal legislation. That’s as of this morning, when Governor Lynch signed HB 1297 into law.

HB 1297 prohibits the state of New Hampshire from setting up a state-run health insurance exchange. New Hampshire is one of only three states to pass such legislation — already 16 other states have established or plan to establish state-run health insurance exchanges.

According to an article by New Hampshire Watchdog’s Grant Bosse, “Rep. Andrew Manuse (R-Derry), the lead sponsor of HB 1297, says the bill would make it more likely ObamaCare would be repealed or replaced, because Congress will be forced to reevaluate the law if enough states opt against setting up their own exchanges.”

Some opponents of HB 1297 wished to create a state-run health insurance exchange in order to attain a more transparent and affordable insurance market for New Hampshire businesses and individuals.  Others found the alternative — a New Hampshire health insurance exchange run by the federal government — a greater threat to the state’s autonomy than a federally mandated but state-run exchange.

The Kaiser Family Foundation created the following map of the each state’s health exchange status. Only two other states, Arkansas and Louisiana, have decided not to create a state-run exchange.


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