HHS announces nearly 700 additional employers and unions to receive help providing health coverage to early retirees and their f
Posted Oct 27 2010 10:01pm
Nearly 3,600 employers and unions approved to participate in the Affordable Care Act’s Early Retiree Reinsurance Program to date; applications still being accepted
The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) today released a list of additional employers and unions accepted into the Affordable Care Act’s Early Retiree Reinsurance Program. Nearly 700 additional large and small businesses, state and local governments, educational institutions, non-profit organizations, and unions have been accepted into the program, which reimburses employers for a portion of the cost of health benefits for early retirees’ and their families. Today’s announcement brings the total number of organizations participating in the program to nearly 3,600.
“By helping employers and unions continue to offer coverage for early retirees, we’re helping them compete -- while providing a measure of certainty and security for their former workers at a time when it could not be more important,” said Secretary Kathleen Sebelius. “The Early Retiree Reinsurance Program seeks to shore up the financial foothold for employers and unions who want to provide coverage to their retirees.”
Created by the Affordable Care Act as another bridge to the new health insurance exchanges in 2014, the Early Retiree Reinsurance Program provides $5 billion in financial assistance to employers and unions, to help them maintain coverage for early retirees ages 55 and older who are not yet eligible for Medicare. Businesses and other employers and unions that are accepted into the program will receive reimbursement for a portion of the costs of health benefits for their early retirees and their spouses, surviving spouses, and dependents. Savings may be used to reduce employer or union health care costs, provide premium or out-of-pocket relief to workers, retirees, and their families, or both. The program ends on January 1, 2014, when the state-based health insurance exchanges will be up and running. HHS’ Office of Consumer Information and Insurance Oversight has approved nearly 3,600 employer and union plans, representing a broad range of employers and unions from all 50 states and the District of Columbia, for participation in the Early Retiree Reinsurance Program, with more applications being reviewed every day. HHS has set up a website, www.ERRP.gov , where sponsors can begin submitting information today to qualify early retirees, spouses, surviving spouses, and dependents for claims reimbursements.
Employers and unions interested in the Early Retiree Reinsurance Program should visit www.ERRP.gov or call 1-877-574-3777 or 877-574-ERRP. Employers and unions can find the application form and application instructions, as well as other relevant guidance and regulations from HHS, online.