Nevada May Join Federal Health Exchange

     CARSON CITY, Nev. (CN) – Thousands of Nevadans have struggled to enroll for health insurance since Silver State Health Insurance Exchange held its first open enrollment in 2013.
     Legislators want to rid the state of its exchange and join the Federal Health Exchange.
      Assembly Bill 368, by Assemblyman Brent Jones, R-Clark, aims to repeal “provisions creating and providing for the Silver State Health Insurance Exchange; requiring the Executive Director of the Exchange to notify the United State Department of Health and Human Services of the cessation of operation of the Exchange.”
      Senate Joint Resolution 14, by state Sen. Don Gustavson, R-Sparks, would amend the Nevada Constitution “to prohibit any agency, board, commission or political subdivision of this State of any local government from creating, operating or maintaining or entering into a contract for the creation, operation or maintenance of a health insurance exchange.”
     Both bills would end a statewide feud Nevadans have been fighting with the Health Exchange.
     The state signed a $75 million contract with Xerox to have it host the system. However, according to healthinsurance.org, technical issues plagued the system, including “failure to correctly assign and pay broker commissions.”
     In April 2014, a class action lawsuit was filed on behalf of citizens who never received coverage they paid for. Despite promises from Xerox to fix the issues, the state fired Xerox in May last year, after paying it $12.3 million of the $75 million contract.
     The state is using Healthcare.gov as the enrollment platform.
     A fiscal note from the Silver State Health Insurance Exchange states: “The Silver State Health Insurance Exchange has reviewed the bill and has determined that while our agency would not have a tangible fiscal impact, Health Insurance Carriers and Citizens of the State of Nevada will be impacted significantly.”
     SJR14 will need to be approved by two consecutive Legislatures and receive approval from voters to change the Nevada Constitution.

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