Uncertainty aside, IT efforts for insurance exchanges continue

Despite the uncertainty that swirls around how the Supreme Court will rule on the Affordable Care Act, healthcare industry stakeholders are continuing efforts to comply with the law.

For instance, the Agency for Health Care Administration in Florida relayed information to companies earlier this week about a $700,000 study for the development a new IT-based Medicaid information system, Health News Florida reports. The idea is to update the state's out-of-date Medicaid eligibility system, as well as to build a system capable of handling duties as a health insurance exchange platform in case ACA is upheld.

"I have to prepare for every scenario," state Rep. Matt Hudson, who chaired Florida's House Health Care Appropriations Subcommittee, told Health News Florida.

A contract will be awarded by June 12, with the study deadline set for July 30.

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services, meanwhile, is looking into creating eligibility tools for insurance exchanges, according to an April 30 announcement posted in Federal Business Opportunities. According to the announcement, CMS is "seeking to identify existing authoritative data sources ... to meet the employer-sponsored coverage verification requirement" of the ACA.

Eric Paternoster, CEO of technology implementation company Infosys Public Services, told InformationWeek Healthcare in a recent interview that he thinks payers also are interested in creating private exchanges, should the law be overturned.

"Given their reading of what happened during the hearings, their thinking [is that if] the mandate is removed and the state exchanges fall, [they will] go ahead with a private exchange or a hybrid model where the states would license private exchanges," Paternoster told InformationWeek.

To learn more:
- here's the Health News Florida article
- here's the Federal Business Opportunities announcement
- read the InformationWeek Healthcare piece

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