Adopting the Connecticut code is a superior solution to the two other options Maryland officials considered, they wrote. Using the federal government's exchange website code "does not adequately support our business model or Medicaid," the Maryland officials wrote. And "remediating the existing architecture" was deemed too expensive and "would take over 12 months and cost more than $66 million."
'New Revenue Stream'
The website code the Connecticut exchange is being provided to Maryland at no charge because Access Health CT is a quasi-public agency that is not yet authorized to charge for HIX-related goods and services. Jason Madrak, chief marketing officer at Access Health CT, said last week in a phone interview that handing over the website code is the least ambitious of three lines of HIX business his colleagues are considering to offer other states.
"Code is code," he said of the gratis deal with Maryland, one of the first major upgrade agreements between public exchanges since they were launched under the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act last fall.
"There is some expertise that is valuable, and we would be open to providing that to them," Madrak added of assistance to the Maryland exchange. "Now that they have the code, the ball is in their court."