By Jim Dooley | Hawaii Reporter
By As the U.S. Supreme Court weighs the legality of President Obama’s national health care initiative, a new Hawaii nonprofit agency is spending $15.4 million to put the plan in action here.
Gov. Neil Abercrombie said Thursday that “Hawaii is the first state in the nation to declare its intent to develop” a locally controlled exchange where small businesses and individuals will be required to purchase health coverage or qualify for federal Medicaid coverage.
Coral Andrews, executive director of Hawaii Health Connector, the nonprofit agency that plans to open and operate the health care exchange, was asked if the state plans to go ahead with its plans regardless of how the Supreme Court rules.The national program, formally called the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, has been challenged as unconstitutional and the Supreme Court is expected to decide that issue by the end of this month.
“Obviously there are different outcomes that could emerge from that Supreme Court decision, but my answer to you is I have every indication that we’re moving forward,” she said.
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