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Official Overseeing State Health Insurance Exchanges to Step Down

Posted on 03 Aug 2011

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Joel Ario, the individual charged with overseeing the creation of U.S. state-based health insurance exchanges is stepping down, according to a senior U.S. health official.

News reports trickled out early Tuesday that Mr. Ario, director of health insurance exchanges at the Health and Human Services Department, is leaving his job.

'Exchange planning will proceed as it has up till now,' said Steve Larsen, director of the Center for Consumer Information and Insurance Oversight within the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services.

'We're going to have a smooth transition. He's not leaving tomorrow,' Larsen told reporters after a hearing on Capitol Hill when asked about Ario's reported departure.

It remains unclear why and when Ario is leaving, or who will replace him.