The Idaho Department of Insurance sent out a short and very direct announcement Friday afternoon: The Idaho Health Insurance Exchange and the Affordable Care Act's Individual Mandate are happening ... and they're happening soon.
The press release came in the wake of an erroneous report that was sent out last weekend that the Idaho version of the health insurance exchange would not be ready by Oct. 1, the deadline for the marketplace to be up and running. A report, first published by the Spokane Spokesman-Review, had suggested that the state’s health insurance exchange would fall under federal jurisdiction due to the state’s failure to meet the federal deadline. But according to officials with the Idaho Exchange, that was not the case. In fact, they said the exchange will be operated by the state and will begin open enrollment in October.
Add to that, Friday's announcement from the State Insurance Department that said, quite plainly, "Starting in 2014 most people will be required to carry health insurance or pay a penalty. We encourage Idahoans to begin now to learn about the Health Insurance Exchange and be prepared to make informed choices for themselves and their families."
The DOI is encouraging Idahoans to learn more about the Individual Mandate at doi.idaho.gov.