Abortion provision stalls Blues Cross mutualization

Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan will not become a mutual insurance company after Gov. Rick Snyder vetoed a bill approving the transition.

Although Snyder originally proposed the Blue Cross mutualization last fall, he chose to veto the bill (S.B. 1293) because a last-minute provision added by state lawmakers would have prohibited health insurance companies, regardless of whether they sell plans on health insurance exchanges, from automatically providing coverage for abortions, The Detroit News reported.

What's more, the bill wouldn't have allowed for exceptions in cases of rape or if a mother's life was endangered, which Snyder said was an "overreach of government," the Detroit Free Press reported.

Snyder ultimately decided it's wrong to dictate what private insurers can negotiate within their contracts. "Insurance companies and private buyers of insurance should be able to conduct their own affairs," he said, according to Michigan Live.

But he hopes to re-introduce the Blue Cross legislation later this month, the Free Press noted. "Blue Cross Blue Shield reform has to start again and it will be a challenge to get it done," Snyder said.

To learn more:
- read the Detroit News article
- see the Detroit Free Press article
- check out the Michigan Live article