Current Status in Establishing Exchange:
Planning for Partnership Exchange. Formed a working group on essential health benefits, conducted an analysis of existing state benefit mandates, assessed benchmark plan options.
- The Arkansas Insurance Department received a federal Exchange Planning grant of almost $1 million in 2010.
- The state was awarded a grant for $7.6 million in federal funding to implement the partnership exchange in February 2012. With this grant Arkansas plans to use it to design and implement automation to connect Arkansas Medicaid and state-run exchange functions to the federally-operated eligibility and enrollment portal, implement systems to support state-operated consumer assistance functions, and develop plan management functions of the Exchange. In September 2012 Arkansas received a second Level One Establishment grant of 18.6 million to work in partnership with the federal government and other state stakeholders to implement plan management and consumer assistance components of the exchange.
· Small Group Plan
· EHB Benchmark Plan: Arkansas Blue Cross Blue Shield Health Advantage Point of Service (POS) Plan (preliminary recommendation)
· Pediatric Dental Supplemental Plan: AR Kids First (CHIP) (preliminary recommendation)
· Pediatric Vision Supplemental Plan: Arkansas Blue Cross Blue Shield Federal Pediatric Vision Plan (BCBS Blue Vision – high) (preliminary recommendation)
· Mental Health Supplemental Plan: QualChoice Federal Plan Mental Health and Substance Abuse Benefits (preliminary recommendation)
· Governor Mike Beebe (D) endorsed the idea of a state-federal partnership exchange.
· Arkansas has taken the lead on insurance plan selection, rating, and monitoring and consumer assistance issues, including education, outreach, and the In-Person Assister program within its partnership.
· A Steering committee was created to authorize resources and provide oversight. The members of this committee include senior management from the Insurance Department, the Department of Human Services, Arkansas Health Agency Leaders, Advisory Committee Co-Chairs, Department of Finance and Administration, legislature, and the Governor’s office.
· The Insurance Department issued a Request for Proposals (RFPs) for subcontractors to assist with the development of Exchange requirements related to qualified health plan certification in early 2012.
· Since this the state has created a Plan Management Advisory Committee comprised of dozens of stakeholders representing hospitals, businesses, consumers, and insurers. The Committee meets bi-monthly and focuses on the definition and delivery of Qualified Health Plan guidelines.
· The state created a Consumer Assistance Advisory Committee comprised of dozens of stakeholders representing consumers, hospitals, and community organization. They meet bi-monthly and focus on Navigator guidelines, outreach efforts, and consumer complaint resolution. Since May 2012 the Committee has issued recommendations regarding who may serve as Navigators, as well as certification standards, training, and application processes for Navigators. These recommendations have been sent to the Steering Committee for review.
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