Gov. Mike Parson has signed today an executive order creating a statewide task force to address the rising costs of healthcare and increase access and competition in insurance markets.

Missouri Governor Mike Parson speaks to the Capitol Press Corps after being sworn-in as governor on June 1, 2018 in Jefferson City (file photo by Tim Bommel/UPI)

In a press release from Parson’s office, it says since 2011, Missourians have been faced with health insurance coverage premiums that have nearly tripled on the individual market. Currently, 101 Missouri counties have only one insurance carrier offering health insurance plans in the individual market.

Parson says it is imperative for the state to develop comprehensive and innovative ways to transform the health insurance market in order to meet the needs of all Missourians.

“Missouri knows best when it comes to taking care of our citizens, not Washington, D.C.,” Parson says. “Our health insurance market is not competitive, and there is no ‘one size fits all’ federal solution that addresses every issue of healthcare access and the rising cost of insurance premiums for Missourians.”

Parson is challenging the group to develop concepts that will improve access to affordable insurance options and healthcare services while reducing the state’s uninsured rates. The governor wants an emphasis on increasing access to healthcare in rural areas of the state.

The task force must submit its recommendations to the governor by January 31, 2020. Parson spokeswoman Kelli Jones says the panel is being formed and who will serve on the task force is unknown at this time.

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