Tuesday, October 07, 2014

Help Wanted?

Yesterday Wal-Mart announced that they would be partnering with DirectHealth.com to provide shoppers with an opportunity to purchase health insurance "on site". Besides milk, bread, and electronics, you will now be able to meet with a licensed health insurance agent. They will be able to assist you in learning about your options at 404care.gov. There is one little caveat to this one stop shopping experience:
"the in-store agents will be able to explain plan details and help with comparison shopping, but they won’t be able to actually enroll you in an individual plan in the store, according to a Walmart spokesperson. To sign up you’ll need to call Direct Health, Walmart’s partner, or go to the website."
Today Wal-Mart announced that they would be dropping insurance coverage for employees who work less than 30 hours per week. They estimate this will impact 2% of their 1,300,000 employees. That's 26,000 people losing employer sponsored insurance. What is the reason for the decision?
"Rising costs of health care and an increase in employee enrollment skyrocketed their February estimated costs from $330 million to over $500 million."
Look on the brightside - these 26,000 people will at least have someone help educate them on how they can get heavily subsidized insurance.
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