The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services will oversee $20 million in seed grants to help states develop "high-risk" insurance pools for individuals with pre-existing health conditions who have difficulty obtaining other coverage. The program was created by a trade act signed in August. An additional $80 million has been appropriated over two years to offset losses incurred by states. Details about applying for further funds will be released shortly, HHS said. Under the program, 27 states and the District of Columbia are eligible for up to $1 million each in grant funding. State insurance pools now enroll a total of more than 153,000 people who are self-employed or who work for businesses that don't offer health insurance, HHS said. -- by Julie Piotrowski
$20 million for states' high-risk insurance pools
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