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Vermont Gets $104.4 Million for Health Care Reform

The state of Vermont is getting a $104.4 million federal grant to continue the process of setting up a health benefits exchange, a key part of state and federal health care reform efforts.

The money will be used to develop information technology, business and outreach operations that will be part of the state's exchange.

Vermont is on target to meet the federal schedule and begin enrolling people in the exchange in October 2013.

The exchanges are Internet-based marketplaces where small employers and individuals will be able to compare health insurance plans and make insurance purchases.

Vermont plans to use the exchange as a springboard to launch a system which is to be as close as it can get to a single-payer health insurance program by 2017.

Copyright 2012 Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.