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The Hawaii Health Connector has prepared a contingency plan to shut down operations by Sept. 30 after lawmakers failed to pass legislation to keep the state's troubled Obamacare insurance exchange afloat.
"Now that it is clear that the state will not provide sufficient support for the Hawaii Health Connector's operations through fiscal year 2016 (ending June 30, 2016), the Connector can no longer operate in a manner that would cause it to incur additional debts or other obligations for which it is unable to pay," Connector officials said in a report released Friday to the nonprofit's board of directors.
The plan, obtained by the Honolulu Star-Advertiser, states the Connector will cease new enrollments Friday, discontinue outreach services May 31 and transfer its technology to the state by Sept. 30. The Connector's workforce will be completely eliminated by Feb. 28. The exchange has 32 employees, 29 temporary staff and 12 full-time contractors.
"Staff reductions will commence immediately, with the executive director (Jeff Kissel) exiting once the bulk of operational activities end," the report said. "If the state cannot facilitate an orderly transition, the Connector's operations will abruptly end, as the Connector does not have the resources to continue operations."
37,000 people will lose their health insurance, and have to scramble onto the federal exchange if they want coverage.
That's the same federal exchange, if you're keeping score at home, that's likely to be eviscerated by the Supreme Court next month. Oh, but HHS has a contingency plan for that too. Tell the states to set up their own exchanges!
The CEO of HealthCare.gov on Monday said states would not be able to immediately set up their own insurance marketplaces if the Supreme Court rules against ObamaCare this summer.
Kevin Counihan, the director of HealthCare.gov, told an audience at the National Health Insurance Exchange Summit that creating an exchange is a "very, very complex activity" that could not be achieved in just a few months.
"It would not be something that folks could do for this next open enrollment period," he said during a question-and-answer session, referring to the sign-up period that begins in November.
I don't think Hawaii is gonna be ready for that. Which ought to make things,
um, interesting for Dear Leader when he goes back there for another
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