It’s not the public health insurance option progressives fought for during the crafting of the Affordable Care Act, but it is close.
The Obama administration is preparing to have the federal government take a more prominent role in health care reform by sponsoring two new multi-state health insurance plans that will be available for individuals and small businesses to purchase under the state exchanges created by Obamacare. Those exchanges launch in 2014.
As reported in the New York Times, the national plans will compete directly with other private insurance plans. Premiums and benefits for the federal plans will be negotiated by the United States Office of Personal Management, the same agency that oversees benefits for federal employees — employees like congressional representatives. The details of these plans have yet to be finalized, but if conservative concern over the plans is any indication, progressives may have scored more of a victory than we first realized with Obamacare.
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