Nevada Health Link Paying off for Nevadans - KTVN Channel 2 - Reno Tahoe News Weather, Video -

Nevada Representatives Say Health Link Smoothing Out

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While federal officials are showing some disappointing enrollment numbers for health insurance through the Affordable Care Act, Nevada officials are singing the praises of the state-based system.

"The big difference really is that it works," says C. J. Bawden with Nevada Health Link. "Really, we could easily have been part of a federal system that just doesn't."

When the Affordable Care Act was passed, Nevada Governor Brian Sandoval opted for Nevada to maintain control over its own system rather than giving that control to the federal government. That has meant that Nevadans have had more say about what's covered on plans offered in this state.

"Nevada's Division of Insurance makes sure federal mandates are covered and state mandates are both covered. So all plans in Nevada will cover Autism Spectrum Disorders because our legislators have mandated it as important in the state. "We held more than 60 public hearings across the state to hear from Nevadans and a state-based system has meant we have more individualism and more control," Bawden says.

Money plays a role in all this too. Not only does Bawden say that our local system was cheaper to install, he says the overhead to run it is cheaper too. And he says that having the system here in the state has put 50-60 individuals to work in the state, thus creating jobs.

To date 3,600 policies have been opened that would potentially cover about 5,600 Nevadans. Bawden says that 513 policies have been completed and paid for to date.

Written by Erin Breen

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