A task force at the ERISA Industry Committee has come out with ideas for a new health and retirement system that might affect the role of many current health insurance agents and benefits brokers.
ERIC, Washington, today introduced the “new benefit platform for life security” at a press conference in Washington.
The group, which represents employers, insurers, banks and consultants, has released a proposal that calls for the federal government to set uniform national benefits standards and divide the United States into several uniform benefits service areas.
At least 2 large-scale “benefit administrators” would compete to sell “lifetime security plans” to employers and individuals in each region, according to an outline of the ERIC task force proposal posted on the ERIC Web site.
“These administrators, who would be trusted intermediaries, must have significant expertise in designing, delivering, and managing retirement and other financial benefits, as well as health plans,” the task force members write in the proposal. “Benefit administrators could be direct providers or assemblers of affiliated providers. Examples might include banks, mutual fund/investment companies, insurers, health plans, or new “platform” administrators.”
Competition among the benefit administrators would help “eliminate fragmentation and unnecessary ‘middlemen’ that add little value to the ultimate consumer,” the task force members write.
Employers could decide whether to work with their current benefits advisors, buy employee benefits from the benefit administrators, or encourage employees to buy their own benefits from the benefits administrators.