Massachusetts officials are requesting $121 million in additional federal funds for a new healthcare exchange website. The new website idea was presented Thursday at a board meeting of the state’s exchange, the Connector. The state’s original healthcare website was dysfunctional, causing officials to create a new plan to get consumers health insurance properly.
Officials contend that they will adopt a dual health track approach, meaning that they will purchase software that can be used to power health exchanges in other states. It will also lay the groundwork for the state to temporarily switch to the federal government’s health exchange, should it be deemed necessary.
The new website comes with a hefty price tag: a whopping $121 million. They previously received $174 million and have already used one third of that money.
Health insurers say that having to build two software systems that work with the state’s two track approach will cost them millions of dollars. This will in turn affect the cost of health insurance. Consumers should expect a significant hike in their health insurance costs.
For taxpayers, Obamacare in Massachusetts has been a more-than-half-billion-dollar blunder. It amounts to: $270 million in federal grants to implement the law, an estimated $120 million through the end of the year to keep some Bay Staters on Commonwealth Care plans, $50 million to pay Optum for easing an application backlog and between $100 million and $145 million for the two-track plan, the Boston Herald reports.