HHS Wants Fed-State Health Exchange

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After blocking Mississippi's proposal for a state-run health insurance exchange, federal officials are encouraging the state to seek approval for a partnership, an exchange run by the state and federal governments together.

That's according to a letter the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services sent Friday to Mississippi Insurance Commissioner Mike Chaney.

Chaney says he doesn't want to do a partnership because he says the state would do most of the work.

Feb. 15 is the deadline to apply to run a partnership.

An exchange is an online marketplace where people can buy health insurance.

Under the health overhaul President Obama signed in 2010, each state must have an exchange by 2014. The exchanges can be run by each state, the federal government or as a partnership.