Zane Benefits Publishes New Information on Health Care Reform's Impact on Defined Contribution

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Affordable Care Act Requires State Health Insurance Marketplaces to Establish a Navigator Program

Today, Zane Benefits, Inc. published new information on health care reform and defined contribution. Zane Benefits, which provides comprehensive and flexible alternatives to traditional employer sponsored health benefits, is the leader in defined contribution and health reimbursement arrangements.

According to Zane Benefits’ website, health care reform creates new health insurance exchanges, health insurance trends and navigators.

What are the New Health Exchanges?

According to Zane Benefits’ website, a health exchange is simply a place where consumers buy health insurance. The concept of health exchanges isn't new, but the term has become a big buzzword with health care reform. There are two types of health exchanges: public and private.

  • Private Health Exchange: A health insurance exchange managed by a private company (insurance company, insurance agent, etc).
  • Public Health Exchange: A health insurance exchange managed by a government (or government-contracted) entity.

Will Private Health Exchanges Exist After 2014?

According to Zane Benefits’ website, yes. As long as health insurance can be sold outside of public exchanges, private health insurance exchanges will exist in 2014 and beyond.

How will State Health Exchanges Work?

According to Zane Benefits’ website, starting in 2014, health insurance coverage for individuals and small businesses will become available through new state (public) health insurance marketplaces. If a state does not set up a state exchange, they will default to the federally-run public exchange. Most importantly, the key tax credits (e.g. the small business healthcare tax credits) and tax subsidies (e.g. individual health insurance tax subsidies) will only be available for coverage purchased via a state health insurance exchange.

What will Health Care Reform do to Health Insurance Rates?

According to Zane Benefits’ website, rates for an individual and family insurance policies will inevitably increase. Because of guaranteed-issued and community-rating, the pool of risk will include healthy, sick, young and old. Rates will go up, as we've seen in the five states that already have guaranteed-issue (MA, ME, NY, NJ, VT).

However, these increased costs will be offset by the significant tax subsidies provided by the government. If an individual is eligible, the tax subsidies will cap the cost of health insurance at 2% - 9.5% of income. Bottom line, it will depend on consumers’ income.

What is a Health Insurance Navigator?

According to Zane Benefits’ website, the Affordable Care Act requires state health insurance marketplaces to establish a “navigator” program. Navigators will help eligible individuals learn about their new coverage options through the exchanges, and enroll. States can award grants to entities that will provide these services.

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About Zane Benefits
Zane Benefits was founded in 2006 to provide a revolutionized SaaS (Software-as-a-Service) administration platform ("ZaneHRA") for Health Reimbursement Arrangements (HRAs) and defined contribution health care. The flagship software provides a 100% paperless administration experience to employers and insurance professionals that want to offer better health benefits without a traditional group health insurance plan at lower costs. For more information about ZaneHRA, visit http://www.zanebenefits.com.

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Christina Merhar
Zane Benefits
800-391-9209 6725
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