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Most Americans favor state exchange component of PPACA

Posted On Tue, January 29, 2013

While it has yet to be determined whether health insurance rates will rise or fall when the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act goes fully into effect, much of the public is in support of some of the law's hallmarks.

According to a recent report released by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, more than half of Americans, regardless of political party affiliation, say that states establishing insurance marketplaces should be considered a "top priority" for their local legislators.

When the PPACA was signed into law, a portion of its requirements held that states would be required to set up affordable health insurance exchange programs that residents could take advantage of. Thus far, approximately 20 states have given indications to the federal government that they will create the exchanges. Other states, meanwhile, have told officials that they have no intention of establishing them, leaving it to the federal government to assume their operation.

Drew Altman, president and CEO of the Kaiser Family Foundation, indicated that this poll shows where much of the public stands as to whether they like or dislike the health reform law.

"Governors are largely splitting along partisan lines on the exchanges, but the public is not," said Altman. "People like the idea."

There is widespread concern, though, over how much the PPACA will ultimately cost. Recent polls conducted by Rasmussen Reports reveal that most consumers think health reform will wind up costing more than Department of Health and Human Services officials forecast.

Because of this, longtime members of the Senate have introduced legislation that would preempt the government from requiring consumers to purchase health insurance.

Last summer, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that the government had the authority to mandate the buying of health insurance because it fell within the legislature's taxing authority jurisdiction.

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