Bill coming soon to establish Colorado health exchange

A bipartisan bill that would develop the specifics of a Colorado health exchange will be introduced late this week or early next week according to bill sponsor Sen. Betty Boyd, D-Lakewood.

Speaking in a meeting put together by the American Diabetes Association, Boyd said that she and House Majority Leader Amy Stephens had worked together to develop a bill she thought may be one of the only bipartisan health exchange bills in the country.

Rep. Amy Stephens

The bill would loosely create a structure for a Colorado health exchange and a board tasked with putting together a health exchange program where insurers and the insured could meet, according to Boyd.

“We are looking at an exchange that regardless of how things work out nationally would be a good thing for Colorado.”

The exchange would be handled by a quasi-governmental entity operating under guidelines set up in statute for such groups. The board would be under legislative oversight.

Boyd said that while discussions in the development of the bill got into the weeds, it does not “get too deep into the weeds because that is the board’s job.”

The board would be comprised of 12 members with some of those appointed by the governor and legislature along with state heads of health care policy, insurance and economy.

Those appointed would be required to fit two of 10 specific competences.

The board would be appointed and in place by July 1 if the bill passes, in order to ensure federal grants could be applied for by September.

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