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Friday, October 7, 2011 - 1:09pm

Health Care Waiver Decision Delayed

The US Health and Human Services Department will take another 30 days to decide whether Georgia can phase in a key provision of health care reform more slowly.

Georgia's top insurance official wants Georgia exempt from a part of the law until 2014.

The provision requires insurance firms to spend no more than 20% of individual premiums on administration and certain other costs.

Cindy Zeldin of Georgians for a Healthy Future says, the rule would benefit consumers.

"It provides better value for consumers," Zeldin says. "And it was our estimation, based on the data, that Georgia insurance companies could go ahead and phase this in more quickly and that there would be a benefit for consumers for doing so."

Georgia Insurance and Safety Fire Commissioner Ralph Hudges says, the provision will hurt competition.

HHS said Friday, it will decide the matter in another month, giving no reason for the delay.

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