Exchange Maps Out Plan for Next Year

The state Health Benefit Exchange board finalized and submitted its request to federal officials for a $196 million Level 1.2 establishment grant — essentially mapping out the exchange’s plans over the next year.

Exchange executive director Peter Lee made the announcement at the board’s July 19 meeting in Oakland.

“We have submitted our establishment funding grant, what we call our Level 1.2 grant, to ensure our continued building of our state-based exchange,” Lee said. “The funding request itself is a demonstration of the partnership that is so vital to the success of the exchange.”

Lee said board members Diana Dooley and Kim Belshé did the final review of the grant request, with supporting letters from governor Jerry Brown and leaders of many state agencies, including the Department of Insurance, the Managed Risk Medical Insurance Board and the Department of Health Care Services.

“This request includes a good, detailed summary of what we’ve done to date,” Lee said. “So if people want a Cliff’s Notes version of some of the accomplishments of the exchange, it goes into great detail about how we have been the stewards of the first grant, and how … we’ve done what we said we were going to do.”

The request is divided into two parts. The second half is a detailed work plan for the exchange, month by month, till June 2013.

“The biggest item in there is IT, and building out the enrollment system,” Lee said. “That represents about $153 million [of the $196 million]. The next biggest expenditure is to do the outreach and marketing, that’s about $37 million.”

Lee said CMS will review the grant request, with final federal approval expected by mid-August.

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