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Report: Connecticut rethinks public health bill amid concerns from insurers

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Report: Connecticut rethinks public health bill amid concerns from insurers

Connecticut legislators are taking a step back to re-evaluate a bill that would have created a public health-insurance option following outcry from insurance carriers, The Wall Street Journal reported, citing state Sen. Matt Lesser.

Insurance carriers took an issue on the creation of a public health insurance option as it would mean they would have to compete with the government for customers, with Lesser saying that Cigna Corp. shared "sharply worded concerns." A Cigna spokesman said the "ill-conceived" public health insurance option would fail and could have a negative impact on the state's long-term viability and vitality, according to the report.

Gov. Ned Lamont said he is still committed to creating a public option in the state. The parts of the bill that require federal government approval to buy prescription drugs from Canada and provide for limiting costs in the state's healthcare system could still push through in 2019, Lesser said.

Lamont and fellow Democratic lawmakers agreed May 23 to create a public option that will let individuals and small businesses buy health insurance through the state. The proposed bill targets a 20% cut in premium costs by 2022, compared with the cost in 2020, and seeks to re-establish the Affordable Care Act's mandate that penalizes uninsured individuals.