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Health benefits for retirees made easier for employers

Posted On Fri, May 7, 2010

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services announced on Tuesday that a temporary program will help employers give health insurance to early retirees.

Department Secretary Katherine Sebelius outlined how the regulations regarding the Early Retiree Reinsurance Program in the Affordable Care Act would be established. Some groups of senior citizens have been particularly concerned with how the healthcare reform act will affect them.

Secretary Sebelius said that "rising costs have made it hard for employers to provide quality, affordable health insurance for workers and retirees. As a result, many Americans who retire before they are eligible for Medicare are worried about losing health insurance coverage through their former employers, putting them at risk of losing their life savings due to medical costs. This new program will provide much-needed relief so that employers can provide more retirees with quality, affordable insurance, starting this year."

The number of employers providing retired workers with health coverage dropped drastically in 10 years from 66 percent in 1988 down to 31 percent in 2008. The healthcare legislation will allocate $5 billion to companies who provide coverage for early retirees.

There are currently 32 million Americans who don't have health insurance.ADNFCR-2297-ID-19765868-ADNFCR

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