The Department of Health and Human Services released a proposed rule on Friday that includes a NAIFA-backed measure to include fair agent compensation in the federally facilitated health care exchanges. According to the notice, HHS will only certify qualified health plans (QHP) to be offered through the federal exchanges if the plans offer broker compensation that is comparable to what similar plans outside of the exchanges would pay.
“NAIFA is pleased the proposed rule recognizes the important role agents and brokers play,” said NAIFA President Rob Smith. “Brokers provide myriad services, from analyzing clients’ coverage needs to helping individuals get claims approved to providing wellness programs for small businesses.”
“Agents and brokers are the de facto human resources departments for many small companies,” Smith added. “These are services that no one else provides and that brokers cannot continue to provide if they are not fairly compensated.”
While encouraged by the proposed inclusion of broker compensation in QHP certification, NAIFA remains concerned about the negative impact of the health care law’s medical loss ratio provision on agent compensation and the overall cost of health coverage. NAIFA looks forward to a continued dialog with regulators and lawmakers to improve the new health law.