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HHS extends high-risk coverage

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Kaiser Health News is reporting the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services will extend the Pre-existing Condition Insurance Plan until March 31.

This is the second such coverage extension for a program designed for roughly 85,000 high-risk enrollees.

Drafters of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA) created the program to provide temporary coverage for “uninsurable” people before 2014.

PPACA requires carriers to sell all individual major medical policies on a guaranteed-issue basis, but the problems with the exchange enrollment programs have interfered with some enrollees’ efforts to replace their PCIP coverage with something else.

Kaiser Health News says Erin Shields, an HHS representative, sent an e-mail about the delay.

Independent confirmation of the story was not immediately available.

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