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HHS Web Portal Information

The Affordable Care Act instructs HHS to establish a web portal by July 1, where the public can easily access and compare information on coverage options given each stage of reform’s implementation. The portal will launch in phases, with the first two phases as described by HHS below:

July 1

In addition to its educational content and information on small business tax credits and the early retiree reinsurance program, the July 1 portal will provide the following information to enable consumers to evaluate their options in the private market.

* Plan names and types (e.g. HMO, PPO)
* Summary of services provided
* List of network providers
* Formulary if available
* Links to plan website
* Consumer contact information to get more information and enroll

For the Medicare program, consumers will be referred to existing Medicare web sites and call centers.

For the Medicaid and CHIP programs, consumers will be able to get the following information for the programs in their states.

* Eligibility information to determine if they or a family member may be eligible to enroll in these programs
* Summary of services available in these programs in their states through core programs as well as waiver programs
* Links and contact information to get more detailed benefit information, determine eligibility on an individual basis, and enroll

For the high risk pools, consumers will be able to get the following information on high risk pools in their states.

* Name and contact information for high risk pools for individual determinations of eligibility and enrollment
* Eligibility criteria for enrolling
* Coverage limitations
* General premium description

October

Starting in October, the web portal will provide more detailed pricing and benefit information on private insurance options. It will show cost-sharing per service, deductibles, and premiums. It will also have plan compare functionalities. This will be accomplished through a full and open competition for a contractor.

In addition, more detailed information will be provided on services covered by the state Medicaid and CHIP programs along with more detailed eligibility criteria. More information will be provided on the federal high risk pool program and state high risk pools, including more information on premiums and cost-sharing.

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