Members of the Congress are on the employer based plan and it was thought they need not sign up on the Obamacare Exchange. But it seems they do have to sign up online at the small business marketplace. To do this they will have personal help from professional navigators.
These members of the Congress like to brag that they will undergo the same process of enrolment as their constituents, as according to the law they need to get coverage from the new insurance exchanges. But it is also true that they can log onto a special BlueCross and Blue Shield website which is for members of the Congress and they have a special toll free number - a "dedicated congressional health insurance plan assistance line."
AdvertisementIn fact the lawmakers have a larger number of options in the gold plan than the constituents do and it is easier for members and their aides to see their options on the website run by the senate. They have approximately 112 options to choose from in the Gold category, in the District of Columbia exchange which is far more extensive than that available to constituents.
The federal government as their employer pays 75% of their premiums which is as much paid to federal government employees and many private businesses. The employees of the government are not eligible for tax credit subsidies.
One part of the new insurance program is veiled in secrecy. Lawmakers may allow some or all of their employees to keep their current insurance by declaring that they do not work in the "official office" of a member of Congress.
References: Hannah Punitha (IRDA Licence Number: 2710062)
Steve McGough, November 2013
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