As the federal government has extended the deadline, Pennsylvania governor Tom Corbett has only two weeks left to decide if the state will set up its own benefits exchange or leave the task to the Obama administration.
The Affordable Care Act originally set a deadline for November 14. States that weren’t ready now have until December 14 to announce their decision. The act states the federal government will cover exchange-related costs until 2015. After that, states will be partially responsible for their own funding, which could cost Pennsylvania up to $100 million a year, according to The Daily Pennsylvanian.
Health care management professor Robert Town told the newspaper calculating future funding needs is an overwhelming task for many governors. He explains Corbett’s delayed decision is completely expected.
“The question is not whether Pennsylvania will have an exchange but who will run it,” he said, “States may need as much time as possible to understand the logistics of putting together their own exchange before deciding whether to do it.”
Another professor, Scott Harrington, said Pennsylvania may also set up a hybrid exchange, where the state and federal government would each run parts of the exchange.