Open Enrollment Approaching: Should We Be Concerned About Health Reforms?
Many employers are about to embark on the annual open enrollment period where they modify their health benefits (or at least consider doing so) and undergo the process of enrolling employees for the 2012 calendar year. Certain provisions of Obamacare (officially known as the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act or "PPACA" for short), have already taken effect. Others will come into play over the next 26 months. This blog does not allow for a comprehensive review of the PPACA. However, we wanted to provide some resources that are accessible, without cost, to help guide our readers as they approach open enrollment and as we get closer to 2014 when all the Act's provisions are scheduled to be in place.
The PPACA has provisions that allow states to set up exchanges to make it easier for individuals and small businesses to compare plans and buy health insurance on the private market. California was one of the first states to begin working on this. This website provides good information on the California Health Benefit Exchange.
There have been many challenges to the PPACA in the courts. If these are successful, the PPACA may not move forward as intended. Only time will tell whether these challenges will derail the PPACA completely, partially or not at all. Six writs of certiorari are currently before the United States Supreme Court and the mandates of Obamacare are under attack based on constitutional grounds. This website provides a good summary of the status of the various lawsuits challenging the PPACA.
On this website, the Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation provides a good summary of the key provisions of the PPACA and a helpful Implementation Timeline.
This is the United States Department of Labor's website on the PPACA. It contains comprehensive information on the Act, including but not limited to access to the proposed DOL regulations related to the Act.
We hope this information is helpful to you.