North Dakota Lawmaker Touts State-Run Health Insurance Exchange Over Federal Intervention

A North Dakota lawmaker says the state should run its own health insurance exchange instead of letting the federal government step in, according to a Bloomsberg Businessweek report.

According to the report, the agency set up by the state would be called a "health benefit exchange" and would have rules on insurance pricing and benefits. The exchanges are intended to serve as a marketplace for individuals and small businesses to purchase insurance at competitive prices.

Federal law requires states to have the exchanges, which can be established by the state or the federal government. Bismarck Rep. George Keiser is the chairman of a legislative committee that is drafting a bill to establish a state exchange.

The bill will be presented to the Legislature's special session next month. Rep. Keiser says while the state-run plan will be costly, it is preferable to allowing the federal government to intervene.

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