The Washington Health Benefit Exchange today announced the statewide launch of Washington Healthplanfinder Business, a customer-friendly, online marketplace that allows employers in Washington with up to 50 employees to compare health plans, decide their contribution level and manage payment – all in one place.
The marketplace was available through Kaiser Health Plan of the Northwest in Clark and Cowlitz counties in 2014, but will now be available statewide for the first time through Moda Health Inc. Small employers can choose from a total of 23 different health plans.
“We are thrilled to launch our statewide offering for small businesses in Washington this year,” said Richard Onizuka, CEO for the Washington Health Benefit Exchange. “With the addition of Moda Health, we’re confident that employers will be able to find a Qualified Health Plan that’s right for their employees and their budget.”
Washington Healthplanfinder Business benefits small employers by:
- Simplifying choices: Washington Healthplanfinder Business provides side-by-side comparisons of state-certified health plans, including their benefits, premiums and quality. All plans cover essential health benefits such as visits to the doctor and emergency room, prescriptions, and preventative care. In addition, plans are offered in three “metal tiers” based on the costs covered.
- Expanding employee options: Business can offer employees a variety of health plans, and their employees can choose the plan that fit their needs and their budget. Washington Healthplanfinder Business is the only place where employers can provide a “metal level” choice in health plans.
- Preserving employer control: Washington Healthplanfinder Business gives employers a secure location to determine their own level of contribution toward their employees’ coverage and make a single monthly payment rather than payments to multiple plans. Consolidated billing will also be available so employers can avoid the hassle of contracting with multiple insurers.
- Lowering Costs: Businesses can save money by spreading insurers’ administrative costs across more employers. In addition, Washington Healthplanfinder Business provides exclusive access to a 50 percent tax credit for health premiums for eligible employers.
“Washington Healthplanfinder Business is a historical new option for small employers in Washington State,” said Catherine Bailey, Director of Washington Healthplanfinder Business. “Small businesses will also be able to enjoy the administrate ease that the marketplace provides.”
If small businesses have questions, expert support is available through the toll-free Customer Support Center and in person through nearly 2,000 insurance brokers across the state. Registered local brokers can answer questions and help small businesses cover their employees through Washington Healthplanfinder Business.
Licensed brokers can become authorized to sell health plans upon completing a Washington Healthplanfinder training course. Brokers must also be appointed by respective health insurance carriers to sell specific plan products. Trainings are available online until November 4. Brokers can sign up for a webinar training here: https://www.wahbexchange.org/insurance-brokers/training-and-registration/.
Enrollment for small employers is year-round. Businesses can sign up and submit their payment by Dec. 15, 2014 for coverage beginning Jan. 1, 2015. Employers can view their options at www.wahealthplanfinder.org.
To hear the real story of an employer who signed up through Washington Healthplanfinder Business last year, click here: http://youtu.be/JLdAeTy8ntw
About Washington Healthplanfinder
Washington Healthplanfinder is a new online marketplace for individuals, families and small businesses in Washington to compare and enroll in health insurance coverage and gain access to tax credits, reduced cost sharing and public programs such as Medicaid. The next open enrollment period for Washington Healthplanfinder begins on Nov. 15, 2014 for health insurance coverage beginning on Jan. 1, 2015. The open enrollment period will extend through Feb. 15, 2015.
About the Washington Health Benefit Exchange
The Washington Health Benefit Exchange is a public-private partnership established in accordance with the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act of 2010 (ACA) to implement a new health insurance marketplace for individuals and small businesses. The Exchange is separate from the state and governed by an independent 11-member board. For more information, visit www.wahbexchange.org.
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