WASHINGTON BUREAU – The 100,000 health insurance producers who belong to the National Association of Health Underwriters are hoping allies will help rescue them from what they see as an increasingly desperate situation – but relief isn't necessarily on the way any time soon.

Jessica Fulginiti Waltman, senior vice president, government affairs for NAHU, Arlington, Va., talked to attendees about producers' plight Thursday here at a state issues conference organized by America's Health Insurance Plans (AHIP), Washington.

On top of the economic stresses and regulatory challenges facing all small business owners, NAHU members also face uncertainty about implementation of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act of 2010 (PPACA) provisions concerning the individual health insurance ownership mandate, rules for small employers, and, above all, the new health insurer and health plan medical loss ratio (MLR) requirements.

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