Nine carriers bid to offer Cover Florida health insurance
Orlando Business Journal
Gov. Charlie Crist announced Thursday the receipt of nine bid proposals by private health care insurance providers seeking to offer Cover Florida health insurance policies to Florida’s 3.8 million uninsured individuals.
The Cover Florida Health Care Access Program, developed by Crist and passed by the state Legislature, aims to offer Florida families and businesses quality health care benefits at a rate of about $150 a month or less.
The bids, submitted to the Agency for Health Care Administration and Florida’s Office of Insurance Regulation, include two statewide carriers and seven regional carriers. Winning proposals will be named by early October 2008, and Cover Florida insurance is expected to be available by Jan. 1, 2009.
Cover Florida permits the state to partner with competitively selected private health care entities to create health insurance products that could not be otherwise offered under existing regulations. Only those plans selected will be awarded contracts to offer Cover Florida.
The competitive negotiation process for Cover Florida plans opened on July 1. The state will approve at least one statewide plan and may approve regional plans as well to maximize the level of consumer choice.
All approved Cover Florida carriers must offer consumers at least two plans, one with catastrophic and hospital coverage, and one without. they also must include at minimum coverage for preventive services, screenings, office visits, outpatient and inpatient surgery, urgent care, prescription drugs, durable medical equipment and diabetic supplies.