Companies May Eventually Push Employees to Exchanges, HHS Says

An HHS official has said large companies may eventually direct employees to the state-run health insurance exchanges now being planned under the healthcare reform law, according to a report by The Hill.

Some observers have feared this would happen right away, causing disruptions, but Joel Ario, an HHS official who oversees the planning for the exchanges, said large companies would shift workers to exchanges over time, if they do so at all.

"We may wind up with an employer-based system for a long time because exchanges may not develop," Mr. Ario said. However, if the exchanges are successful, employers would have an incentive to drop their health plans. They would say, "'This is a great thing. I can now dump my people into the exchange and it would be good for them, good for me,'" Mr. Ario added.

Read The Hill report on health insurance exchanges.

Read more coverage of health insurance exchanges:

- Cost of Reform Unclear Until Benefits Are Defined

- Five Reform Provisions Targeted for Defunding

- HHS Issues Report Outlining Assistance Provided to States Through Affordable Care Act — $2.8B Distributed to Date

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