It turns out that large employers, particularly ones with large numbers of low paid employees, can issue complying plans that do not cover hospitalization>:
Lance Shnider is confident Obamacare regulators knew exactly what they were doing when they created an online calculator that gives a green light to new employer coverage without hospital benefits.
“There’s not a glitch in this system,” said Shnider, president of Voluntary Benefits Agency, an Ohio firm working with some 100 employers to implement such plans. “This is the way the calculator was designed.”
Timothy Jost is pretty sure the whole thing was a mistake.
“There’s got to be a problem with the calculator,” said Jost, a law professor at Washington and Lee University and health-benefits authority. Letting employers avoid health-law penalties by offering plans without hospital benefits “is certainly not what Congress intended,” he said.
As companies prepare to offer medical coverage for 2015, debate has grown over government software that critics say can trap workers in inadequate plans while barring them from subsidies to buy fuller coverage on their own.
Companies considering such plans include a restaurant chain with 1,000 workers, a trucking firm with 500 employees and dependents, a delicatessen, a fur farm and firms working the oil boom in upper Midwest, Flunker said.
Employer interest in the plans “is definitely picking up pretty quickly,” said Kevin Schlotman, director of benefits at Benovation, an Ohio firm that designs and administers health coverage. “These are organizations that are facing a significant increase in expenses. They’re trying to do their best.”
I rather imagine that WalMart is working to set up something like this.
Evil is as evil does.
This is what happens when you decide that the source of the problem must be “partners” in a solution.
The free market aspects of American healthcare are what cause the high prices and opacity and poor outcomes.
Expecting that stapling a few regulations on this system would fix it was delusional.