By Patrick Howley, Daily Caller
Republicans on Capitol Hill say the Obama administration is trying to regulate or prevent small companies from providing self-funded insurance for their employees because self-funded insurance plans could be the “Achilles heel” for Obamacare implementation.
The majority of U.S. employers now offer self-funded insurance plans, in which companies finance employee health plans from their own funds. Many of the companies purchase stop-loss insurance plans from insurance providers. These companies would therefore avoid many Obamacare regulations when the law takes full effect in 2014. The practice of self-funded insurance, which was outright banned in early drafts of Obamacare, represents the “Achilles heel” for Obamacare implementation, according to insiders.
Phyllis Borzi, the Obama administration’s assistant secretary for employee benefits security in the Department of Labor, is a well-known opponent of stop-loss insurance and is suspected of making behind-the-scenes moves to prevent small companies from providing it, according to Washington insiders. The Department of Health and Human Services is capable of implementing new regulations on self-funded insurance on a federal level.