Arizona: Governor Signs Bill Banning Exchange Abortion Coverage
Governor Doug Ducey (R) signed SB 1318 into law, prohibiting qualified health plans offering coverage on the federal Marketplace from covering abortions, except in the case of rape or incest. The new law also requires that physicians performing an abortion inform patients that it may be possible to reverse the effects of a medical abortion and that the Arizona Department of Health Services post similar information on their website.
Vermont: Gov. Shumlin Announces Marketplace Contingency Plan
Governor Peter Shumlin (D) announced that he would present a plan to transition Vermont Health Connect (VHC) to a Supported State Based Exchange Model in November if the State-based Marketplace fails to become fully functional ahead of the 2016 open enrollment period. Gov. Shumlin set forth two milestones for the marketplace and its lead contractor, Optum, to meet in order to ensure his continued support of VHC: (1) the development of automated processes for updating both personal and plan information by May, and (2) plan renewals by October, reports the Vermont Digger. Though Shumlin says he is "optimistic" that VHC will become fully operational before these dates, he suggested his preference for transitioning to a Supported State Based Model, in which Vermont would maintain authority over the plans offered on the marketplace, should this become necessary. In the meantime, Shumlin is expected to outline his plan in August for VHC's operation during the 2015 open enrollment period.