Zane Benefits Publishes New Information on the Health Insurance Marketplaces

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Only 140 (vs. 900) Insurance Carriers Intend to Offer Plans on Federal Marketplace

Today, Zane Benefits, Inc. published a new information on health insurance marketplaces. Zane Benefits, which provides comprehensive and flexible alternatives to traditional employer sponsored health benefits, is the leader in defined contribution plans and HRAs.

According to Zane Benefits’ website, the October 1, 2013 open enrollment of the Health Insurance Marketplaces is right around the corner. The mantra of the Marketplaces is "Choice, Competition and Clout for States." But which insurance carriers will offer health insurance plans in the Marketplaces? Will there be enough choice for individuals and small businesses? Will there be enough competition to keep prices low for individuals and small businesses?

Only 140 (vs. 900) Insurance Carriers Intend to Sell on Federal Marketplace

In late April, the deadline for insurance carriers to express intent of selling on the federal Marketplace was extended to early May. Gary Cohen, deputy administrator of CMS and director of the Center for Consumer Information and Insurance Oversight (CCIIO), admitted to the House Energy & Commerce subcommittee that only 140 insurers had expressed interest in selling qualified health plans (QHPs) on the federal Marketplace... as compared to the estimated 900 insures the administration originally predicted.

This trend is carrying over into states operating their own state-based Health Insurance Marketplaces. For example in Illinois, only six (6) insurance carriers had expressed intent to sell on the Illinois Health Insurance Marketplace as of May 1. The six (6) carriers would sell a combined 165 health policies. These numbers, too, are far lower than expected (Source: Washington Post).

Marketplace Carrier Competition to Mimic State Competition Now

The level of competition in the Marketplaces will vary by state and will likely mimic the current level of insurance carrier competition. For example, experts predict states that already have strong health insurance carrier competition, such as in Colorado, Minnesota and Oregon, will have more diverse plans offered through the Marketplaces and will attract more insurance carriers. Similarly, states that have near-monopolies now such as Alabama, Hawaii, Michigan, Delaware, Alaska, North Dakota, South Carolina, Rhode Island, Wyoming and Nebraska will have limited competition in the Marketplaces (Source: Kaiser Health News).

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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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