Kingsport Times News Thursday, December 18, 2014

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Haslam on expanding health coverage: 'I would rather get it right than get it now'

September 3rd, 2013 10:07 pm by Hank Hayes

Haslam on expanding health coverage: 'I would rather get it right than get it now'

KINGSPORT — Tennessee Gov. Bill Haslam said Tuesday that negotiations continue with the federal government while the clock ticks down on his plan allowing more Tennesseans to get health insurance coverage under Obamacare.

 Haslam, a Republican, pitched his plan to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) last week in Washington, D.C., but didn’t get a deal done.

Last March, Haslam announced he would not expand TennCare, the state’s Medicaid program, under Obamacare but instead would work to leverage available federal dollars to purchase private health insurance for Tennesseans who would not otherwise have access to coverage.

He said his “Tennessee Plan” could cover an additional 175,000 Tennesseans and called for copays and compensating health care providers for healthy outcomes, not just services performed.

In a meeting with members of the Times-News Editorial Board, Haslam said state officials continue to have “philosophical and detail” discussions with HHS.

See Wednesday's print edition for an expanded version of this story.

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