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Towers Watson Signs Agreement with Federal Government to Facilitate Public Exchange Enrollments

Posted on 13 Aug 13 by Annie George

Towers Watson, a global professional services company, today announced that it has signed a web broker entity agreement with the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services, which supervises the federally facilitated marketplace — the health insurance exchange operated by the federal government in 36 states.

With this agreement, Towers Watson can help employers provide health insurance education and enrollment services to part-time and seasonal employees, retirees and their dependents by supporting them as they evaluate and purchase individual health plans on the federally run exchange.

Towers Watson's exchange platform will seamlessly integrate with federal eligibility systems so that it can assist individuals every step of the way as they shop for and enroll in subsidized coverage through the federal exchange. The agreement specifies privacy and security requirements and consumer support guidelines that web broker entities must follow to protect individuals who purchase plans on the federal exchange.

According to the Kaiser Family Foundation, 78 percent of the uninsured live in households where at least one family member works. Many people who hold part-time or seasonal positions do not have access to employer-sponsored health benefits, and when they do, many do not opt in to the coverage.

Bryce Williams, managing director of Exchange Solutions for Towers Watson, said, "Many Americans today either don't qualify for their employer's health plan or choose not to enroll in it. This agreement lets Towers Watson help employers provide a way for part-time and seasonal employees, retirees and their dependents to learn about the health insurance options available to them, qualify for subsidies if they are eligible and enroll in health coverage on the federal exchange."

Added Williams, "This lets us be a single destination for advice on getting coverage in all 36 states served by the federal exchange, both for employers and their geographically diverse workforces."

Towers Watson operates the nation's largest private Medicare exchange, which offers thousands of private Medicare plans from more than 85 health insurance carriers. Licensed benefit advisors and technology-based decision support tools provide personalized support and expert guidance to retirees as they shop for individual plans. Nearly 300 public and private sector employers and trade associations have used Towers Watson's private Medicare exchange to connect more than a half million customers with health coverage.