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National health plans may be unavailable in some states next year

Jackson Free Press / Kaiser Health News, July 9, 2013

National health insurance plans aimed at giving consumers more choice might be unavailable in some states next year, leaving residents with fewer options and potentially higher premiums. Such "multi-state" plans were included in the federal health law to boost competition among insurers, particularly in states with few carriers. They were also seen as a consolation to supporters of the failed effort to require a government-run "public option." Debate continues about whether the plans would fulfill those aims, but the bigger question now is which states will have them in October, when new online marketplaces begin selling insurance to individuals and offering federal tax credits to help cover the cost of premiums to those who qualify.