Why Employers Need to Pay Attention
By Colleen Bruce
When the Affordable Care Act first passed, most self-insured employers thought they wouldn't need to pay much attention to the new health insurance exchanges (or marketplaces) created by the law. After all, they were intended to help uninsured people get access to insurance, and their employees were obviously insured. And President Obama did promise that if people liked their employer coverage, they would get to keep it. So there wasn't really anything for self-insured employers to worry about, right?
Well, it turns out that things aren't that simple. Employers do need to pay attention to the exchanges that have launched in their states -- either by the state or the federal government -- because even if their employees don't use them, the functioning of the exchanges depends pretty heavily on some critical interactions among exchanges, employers, and their employees.