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November 18. 2013 10:53AM

NH’s high risk insurance pool extended due to Obamacare problems

CONCORD — Insurance Commissioner Roger Sevigny announced Monday that he will order the high-risk pool to remain open for people who have been denied health insurance, citing uncertainties of whether risk-pool members will be available to enroll in the Obamacare insurance marketplace on time.

Sevigny said he will order the high-risk pool to remain open into 2014, until guaranteed, subsidized coverage is available through the federal marketplace.

“Many in the high-risk pool require medical care on an ongoing basis, and many have not yet found substitute coverage for next year. These people need to know for certain that they will have coverage in January of 2014, and cannot wait until the last minute to enroll through Healthcare.gov,” Sevigny said.

In a statement issued Monday morning, the New Hampshire Insurance Department cited technical difficulties with the Healthcare.gov website, which serves as New Hampshire’s health insurance marketplace.

The high-risk pool, which is operated by New Hampshire Health Plan, was scheduled to close on Dec. 31. Risk-pool members and their brokers are concerned they will not have coverage in 2014, the Insurance Department said.

“The Legislature authorized me to order the extension of high-risk pool coverage if necessary, and given the operational problems with the federal marketplace, I believe it is prudent to do so,” Sevigny said. He expect to issue a final order later this week.


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