Timeline: Health Care Exchange Discussion in Wisconsin

Nov 16, 2012

Update: Gov. Walker announces that Wisconsin will not create its own health insurance exchange.

Gov. Scott Walker has until Friday Nov. 16 to announce whether Wisconsin will create its own health care exchange under the Affordable Care Act. If the state refuses, the federal government will create Wisconsin's exchange.

States must tell the federal government by Friday whether they'll create a state-run health exchange.

As WUWM's Ann-Elise Henzl reported, Walker remains mum on his decision.

The Affordable Care Act, which critics refer to as Obamacare, calls for the creation of health insurance exchanges, state-run or federal-run markets where households and small businesses can shop for private coverage.

What follows, is a timeline, including Wisconsin's actions:

September 2010

Wisconsin Department of Health Services receives a $1 million federal grant for health insurance exchange planning.

January 2011

Gov. Walker takes office and issues an executive order to create the Office of Free Market Health Care to develop a plan for a Wisconsin health exchange.

February 2011

Wisconsin receives a $37.7 million federal Early Innovator grant.

December 2011

The Walker administration stops working on the exchange until the Supreme Court rules on the Affordable Care Act’s constitutionality.

January 2012

Gov. Walker returns the Early Innovator grant.

June 2012

The Supreme Court upholds the Affordable Care Act.

July 2012

Gov. Walker announces that he would not take any action to implement a health exchange in Wisconsin until after the November election.

November 6, 2012 - Election Day

President Obama wins re-election.

After election results come in, Governor Walker says, “We’re going to go forward in a way that ultimately looks out for the best interests of the people of the state, both as consumers but also as taxpayers.”

On Nov. 8, Republican House Speaker John Boehner says, "Obamacare is the law of the land."

November 16, 2012

Gov. Walker announces that Wisconsin will not create its own health insurance exchange.

December 14, 2012

Extended deadline (originally November 16, 2012) for states to submit a letter indicating their intent to establish a state-based exchange and full blueprint of the state’s proposed exchange. If states do not submit a letter, the health exchange will be implemented by the federal government’s Health and Human Services Department.

January 1, 2013

HHS’s deadline to approve state-based exchanges as fully or conditionally operational. If not approved, the federal government will assume responsibility for running a health insurance exchange in the state.

October 1, 2013

Open enrollment begins for health exchange plans.

January 1, 2014

State insurance exchanges need to be in place because coverage will be in effect.