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Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Workplace Trends

Massachusetts Healthcare Reform Law
Massachusetts Health Care Reform became law on April 12, 2006. The Health Care Reform Act, passed as a Session Law, has been and will continue to be incorporated into the General Laws of the Commonwealth. The entire Act can be read under Chapter 58 of the Acts of 2006. If your library does not have a print subscription to the laws of Massachusetts the Health Care Reform Act can still be read in its entirety at

The goal of the Healthcare Act is universal health insurance for all Massachusetts residents. Under this Act all residents 18 and over were required to obtain health insurance by July 1st, 2007. There are three ways that individuals can obtain health insurance: private insurance, insurance coverage through an employer, or coverage through the newly established Commonwealth Choice Health Plan.

The Commonwealth Choice Health Plan is administered by the Commonwealth Health Insurance Connector. The Connector, established by subsection (a) of section 2 of Chapter 176Q, assists individuals and families, employees, and employers to choose the right health plan. They also provide subsidies to assist eligible individuals in purchasing health insurance.

The folks at the Commonwealth Connector Authority can be reached by phone at 1-877-623-6765. However, the Connector website is the best place to start if you have internet access:

From this site small business employers can determine their obligations under the new law, find help in creating a health plan for their employees, and read the details of the Cafeteria Plan mandate. Individuals and families are assisted in selecting a health plan from among six insurance companies through a program called Commonwealth Choice. Alternatively, individuals and families can learn how to utilize the Commonwealth Care program. Commonwealth Care is an insurance program for uninsured individuuals with incomes that fall within certain guidelines and who meet other qualifications.

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