Zane Benefits Publishes New Information on Virginia Health Insurance Exchange

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Virginia Residents to Access Federal Tax Subsidies for Policies Purchased on Exchange in October 2013

Today, Zane Benefits, Inc. published new information on Virginia Health Insurance Exchange. Zane Benefits, which provides comprehensive and flexible alternatives to traditional employer sponsored health benefits, is the leader in defined contribution and health reimbursement arrangement plans.

According to Zane Benefits’ website, beginning in 2014 as part of the Affordable Care Act (ACA), health insurance coverage for individuals and small businesses will become available through new state health insurance exchanges.

The key tax credits and tax subsidies will only be available for coverage purchased through a state health insurance exchanges. All states have three options for setting up a state health insurance exchange for 2014: Build a state-based exchange, enter into a state-federal partnership exchange, or default to a federally-facilitated exchange.

Virginia will default to a federally-facilitated health insurance exchange, while maintaining involvement with plan management functions. The Virginia Health Insurance Exchange will open October 1, 2013, with coverage beginning January 1, 2014.

How the Virginia Health Insurance Exchange Was Formed

According to Zane Benefits’ website, originally Virginia officials explored operating a state-based health insurance exchange. In April 2011, Virginia Governor McDonnell signed HB 2434 into law declaring the state’s intent to establish a state-based health insurance exchange. The legislation was based on recommendations by the Virginia Health Reform Initiative Advisory Council. However in November 2011, Governor McDonnell opposed passing additional legislation needed for the establishment of a state-based exchange until after the Supreme Court ruled on the ACA in June 2012. After ACA was upheld, numerous bills to establish a state-based health insurance exchange were introduced in the 2012 Virginia Legislature however none were brought to voting.

In March 2013, Virginia received approval from the Center for Consumer Information and Insurance Oversight (CCIIO) to perform plan management activities of the Virginia Health Insurance Exchange. The federal government will oversee and manage all other Exchange functions.

Virginia Health Insurance Exchange Overview

According to Zane Benefits’ website, the Virginia Health Insurance Exchange will be operated through a federally-run Health Insurance Exchange (also called the "Health Insurance Marketplace"). According to healthcare.gov, starting in October 2013 Virginia residents will be able to access information about insurance plans available through the Exchange. The SHOP Exchange will be available to small businesses in Virginia for businesses with 100 or fewer employees. Coverage starts January 1, 2014.

According to an estimate by healthcare.gov, 844,750 or 12% of Virginia's non-elderly residents are uninsured, of whom 775,330 (92%) may qualify for either tax credits to purchase coverage in the Exchange or for Medicaid if Virginia participates in Medicaid expansion. Through the Exchange, Virginia residents can shop for and compare insurance plans, access insurance premium tax credits, and be screened for eligibility in public assistance programs such as Medicaid and CHIP.

Plans Available Through the Virginia Health Insurance Exchange

According to Zane Benefits’ website, all plans offered through the Virginia Health Insurance Exchange will meet the ACA definition of a Qualified Health Plan (QHP). The plans will be offered by level of coverage for essential health benefits (EHB), to allow consumers to compare plans on an "apples to apples" basis. The four "metal" levels are: Bronze (plan pays 60%), Silver (plan pays 70%), Gold (plan pays 80%) and Platinum (plan pays 90%). More information on the types of plans that will be available, and the carriers offering plans in Virginia, is expected by late summer 2013.

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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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