VERMONT — As the state works toward establishing the Vermont Health Benefit Exchange, which will act as the central clearinghouse from which Vermont residents and businesses alike must purchase their primary health insurance, and beyond the Exchange a Vermont single-payer health care system, a number of key dates lie on the path.
Some dates have passed: In May 2011, the Vermont Legislature passed Act 48, which called for most of the major health care reforms, and a year later the Legisature passed H. 559, which made final plans for the Health Benefit Exchange.
MIDDLEBURY — At the Ilsley Library on Sept. 13, Vermont Commissioner for Department of Vermont Health Access Mark Larson described the workings of the Vermont Health Benefit Exchange that will by 2014 will serve as the central purchasing point for all the state’s insurance plans — and touched on how the Exchange will help Vermont transition into a single-payer health care system by 2017.
MIDDLEBURY — According to the federal Affordable Care Act, all insurance plans offered in Vermont by 2014 must contain 10 essential elements.
Those are coverage for:
1. “Ambulatory patient services,” which refers to outpatient hospital care and walk-in care at medical practices.
2. Emergency care.
3. Prescription drugs.
4. Rehabilitative and chronic illness care.
6. Maternity and newborn care.