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Posted: Tuesday, October 2nd, 2012 9:00 AM HST

Hawaii sets insurance minimums for health care

By Associated Press

HONOLULU (AP) Hawaii has set minimum standards for health care insurance plans that can be sold in Hawaii under new federal guidelines.

Hawaii Gov. Neil Abercrombie announced the minimums at a press conference on Monday. Abercrombie says the minimums will help Hawaii lead the nationwide health care transition.

The minimums include things like ambulance services, hospitalization and prescription drugs. The guidelines will take effect in 2014.

Hawaii is among the states that bet correctly that the U.S. Supreme Court would uphold Obama's law. The high court ruled in favor of the law in June.

U.S. Census data from 2010 show 7.7 percent of Hawaii residents are without health insurance. That's the second-lowest rate in the country behind Massachusetts at 5.5 percent.

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