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SC to reject federal HIX funds

The State, September 2, 2011

Gov. Nikki Haley said she will let federal deadlines slip by and not accept millions in federal funds to help South Carolina set up its own health insurance exchange. Health insurance exchanges, the centerpiece of federal healthcare reform, are online marketplaces, to be set up by each state, where the uninsured could compare insurance plans from private insurance companies and buy the one that best fits their needs. Uninsured people who meet certain federal poverty guidelines could buy coverage using federal tax credits. The exchanges are scheduled to open in 2014 when the healthcare law goes into full effect. If a state has not made progress by Jan. 1, 2013, the federal government will step in. But Haley and Tony Keck, whom Haley appointed to head the state's Department of Health and Human Services, say the federal plan is not the right fit for South Carolina.