Employers are working overtime to sort through the details of the new health care reform legislation and its effect on their benefits programs. Although the legislation creates lots of changes for employers and the medical insurance they offer employees, experts predict the impact on voluntary benefits to be minimal. That is good news for everyone, but it is an especially welcoming message for major medical brokers looking for new sources of revenue.

As health insurance becomes more widely available during the next few years, voluntary benefits will still be in demand to help employees strengthen their financial safety nets as they face more risks and costs. Because of its complexity, health care reform will also create a growing need for effective benefits communication and education at the worksite. In fact, the need for voluntary benefits, coupled with effective benefits communication and education, will be stronger than ever. You do not want to miss out on this tremendous sales opportunity by taking a wait-and-see approach.

Many of the changes outlined in the legislation will take several years to implement. In the meantime, we are confident that:

o Voluntary benefits will be minimally affected in the short-term.

The insurance market reforms in the legislation address comprehensive major medical insurance coverage and not plans considered excepted benefits from the portability, access and renewability requirements of HIPAA. Excepted benefits would include accident, disability, specified disease and hospital indemnity coverage.

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