While waiting for Michigan's health insurance exchange to open in 2014, small businesses and individuals seeking health insurance have a few more options, with new products offered by UnitedHealthcare Michigan and Health Alliance Plan of Michigan.
Health insurers in Southeast Michigan are already gearing up their small business and individual health insurance products to prepare for 2014, when the Patient Protection and Affordable Health Act of 2010 fully kicks in and most individuals are required to purchase insurance.
An estimated 1.1 million people in Michigan are uninsured. About half are expected to purchase subsidize private health insurance through a state or federally operated health insurance exchange. The other half could become eligible for Medicaid, if state legislators next year approve a Medicaid expansion.
United is now offering small businesses with 99 or fewer employees a multi-choice health plan option with 26 different coverage levels, deductibles and premiums, including high-deductible health plans with health savings accounts. The plans could include such specialty benefits as dental, life, disability and vision coverage.
"UnitedHealthcare is helping more small businesses preserve coverage for their employees–and in fact, increase their options–while still controlling costs," said Jelka Petrovic, UnitedHealthcare Michigan's CEO in Southfield, in a statement.
"We recognize that these businesses and their employees are faced with many challenges in today's economic environment, and Multi-Choice gives them flexible, cost-effective healthcare options."