Wal-Mart begins seeking alternative health insurance solutions
Health care overhaul seems to be an unstoppable force in the U.S., and that has put many parties, such as employers, in a somewhat difficult position. As part of the Affordable Care Act, states are being required to host health insurance exchanges. One of the problems concerning these exchanges is that they are designed with consumers in mind, not businesses. Thus, a public exchange system may not be viable for large companies that provide their employees with health insurance benefits. Wal-Mart is among the companies looking for an alternative.
Private health insurance exchange could be good for small businesses
Wal-Mart has begun exploring the merits of getting involved with a private health insurance exchange. The retail giant is not looking into an exchange program for itself, however, but is interested in designing a health insurance exchange specifically for small businesses. One of the primary criticisms surrounding the Affordable Care Act is that the law is expected to make health insurance plans for small businesses exceptionally more expensive. A private health insurance exchange system may be an adequate remedy to this potential problem.
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Wal-Mart shows enthusiasm to work with health insurers
Wal-Mart is eager to work with health insurance providers and to find a way to provide low-cost insurance options that meet the needs of small businesses. Small businesses typically have very few options when it comes to the health insurance benefits they can provide their employees. In the coming months, these benefits are expected to become more costly, leading some companies to cut their benefits entirely.
Exchange may benefit from Wal-Marts considerable marketing and buying power
The private health insurance exchange developed by Wal-Mart would leverage the company’s considerable buying and marketing power, making the program widely accessible. Whether or not the exchange itself will operate as a non-profit group has yet to be determined, however. A state-run or federal health insurance exchange must be non-profit, and Wal-Mart may be inclined to follow this example.