Florida Health Insurance Plan To Insure More Individuals

Armen Hareyan's picture

FloridaGov. Charlie Crist (R) is traveling through the state touting his proposal thatseeks to provide health coverage to up to 3.8 million uninsured residents, the MiamiHeraldreports. According to the Herald, Crist's plan would removemandates that require insurance plans to include coverage of up to 50 services,which would allow insurers to offer stripped-down plans with premiums as low as$150 a month.

The planwould include coverage of office visits, outpatient surgery, medical equipment,inpatient hospital stays and emergency care services. Under the proposal, twotiers of coverage for catastrophic and noncatastrophic illnesses would beavailable for residents who were uninsured for the previous six months.

The state Senate is expected to approve Crist's proposal this week. The state House Healthcare Council on Tuesday approved legislationthat includes some provisions of Crist's plan and that would establish apublic-private not-for-profit corporation to administer stripped-down plans forsmall businesses (Hatcher/Caputo, Miami Herald, 4/9). UnderCrist's plan, state regulators would oversee the program (Bousquet, St.Petersburg Times, 4/9).

Both of the plans are voluntary, but they would require employers toautomatically enroll workers in health plans, and employees could opt out. Bothplans also would require insurers to provide coverage to dependent children upto age 30 and loosen eligibility requirements for certain plans, includingHealth Flex Plans and KidCare, the state's version of SCHIP (MiamiHerald, 4/9).

Reprintedwith permission from kaisernetwork.org. You can view the entire Kaiser Daily Health Policy Report, search the archives, and sign upfor email delivery at kaisernetwork.org/email . The Kaiser Daily Health PolicyReport is published for kaisernetwork.org, a free service of The Henry J.Kaiser Family Foundation.