Self-Funded Health Plans Under Scrutiny – Plans Under Threat

The health care reform law could threaten the ability of employers that self-fund their health care plans to design those plans, benefit experts say. The level of some of those threats could be known in just a few weeks.

At issue is ERISA. ERISA exempts self-funded plans from hundreds of state laws that set benefit requirements on health care plans offered by insurers. Seventy percent of employers self-fund PPO plans, the most common plan design that employers offer.

Employers’ freedom to design and fund self insured plans with few impediments is being reviewed by federal regulators. They are due to report their concluesions to Congress by the end of this month.

Business Insurance, March 14, 2011