Preserving Existing Benefits and Creating New Opportunities

Preserving Existing Benefits and Creating New Opportunities

Employer-sponsored health coverage is the backbone of the U.S. health care system. Retailers have long-provided their employees with quality health coverage and would like to continue doing so. However, burdensome, costly and often redundant federal laws and regulations bind the hands of employers and make it more difficult to continue to provide health coverage, create jobs and grow the economy. RILA is committed to working with Congress and federal agencies to ensure that retailers can continue to provide quality, affordable health coverage that is customized to meet the specific needs of their employees.   

RILA members are at the forefront of developing new innovative approaches designed to encourage preventative health, improve outcomes, and lower health care costs. RILA has been a driving force in opposition to modify the tax treatment of employer-sponsored coverage to pay for a new individual health tax credit.  Leading retailers strongly support employer-sponsored healthcare coverage.

Employer Reporting Requirements: 

RILA is the leader in enacting streamlined, commonsense reforms to burdensome and costly ACA employer reporting requirements.  RILA has continually stressed to lawmakers and federal regulators that the Exchange eligibility process and employer reporting requirements should be aligned with tax credit determinations.  This would provide more accurate and timely information and the regulatory burden on employers would be lessened.

Modernization of Consumer-Directed Health Products: 

Over the last several years, many RILA member companies have moved away from traditional fee-for-service plan offerings to a system coupling a health savings account (HSA) with a high-deductible health plan (HDHP).  This transition is guided by retailer’s innovative approach to customizing benefit designs and creating health plans that best meet the needs of their employees and families.  However, Congress has not substantially updated HSA laws since 2003.  RILA will continue to advocate for the modernization of HSAs that provide more flexibility and value for retail employees.  RILA supports allowing employees to access onsite or retail primary care clinics, pre-deductible coverage for chronic disease management, and opportunities to use HSAs for fitness or wellness activities. 

Promoting Employee Health and Wellness:

The Affordable Care Act (ACA) included a provision in which employers were allowed to offer incentives for employees to participate in health wellness programs.  Helping employees manage chronic illnesses or adverse health conditions can be an important tool to achieve better health for all employees. However, since the ACA’s passage, wellness plan offerings have been entangled in legal proceedings and subjected to multiple revisions by the U.S.  Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) on how employers could offer such plans without being in violation of disability and genetic information laws.  The EEOC recently issued revised wellness program rules which are now under the regulatory review process.  RILA will continue to educate lawmakers on how wellness plans can improve employee health outcomes, lower costs by appropriately managing conditions, ultimately leading to better population health.

Partnership for Employer Sponsored Coverage

RILA is a steering Committee member of the Partnership for Employer Sponsored Coverage. The Partnership is an advocacy alliance for employers of all sizes and the millions of hardworking Americans and their families who rely on employer-sponsored health care coverage.

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Tags
  • Investing in People
  • Retail Works for All of Us
  • Health Care

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