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If I were King....

If I were King, and could wave my magic wand, my three wishes would be (ooops, I think I am mixing metaphors, oh well): Engage my employees as partners with me in the quality and cost of their health benefits. I would Implement a benefit design similar to the State of Tennessee , offering lower payroll deduction for premium co-shares, lower deductibles, lower co-pays, and lower co-insurance in exchange for employees and their families taking an HRA, getting their biometrics, and agreeing... Read More
Posted by Cristie Travis at Friday, September 23, 2011 | 0 comments

NBCH Hospital Patient Safety Action Brief Details Actions for Employers

The National Business Coalition on Health's (NBCH) Action Brief on Hospital Patient Safety, lays out the issues, details how health plans across the country are or are not working to improve safety, and details actions employers can take to have an impact on patient safety for their employees. 2011 eValue8 results were used to track how health plans are or are not working to improve safety. MBGH is an active participant in the eValue8 process and this year both BlueCross BlueShield of... Read More
Posted by Cristie Travis at Thursday, September 22, 2011 | 0 comments

State Governments Requiring More from Employees in New Health Benefits

Maybe it's time for the private sector to look at how state governments are ratcheting up the requirements for employees to get health benefits and follow suit. Whether it is called the Health Enhancement Plan, like it is in Connecticut, or the ParTNers for Health Plan, as it is in Tennessee, state governments are offering new plans that offer lower employee costs (through payroll deductions, deductibles, co-pays, co-insurance) in exchange for employee engagement in health risk... Read More
Posted by Cristie Travis at Thursday, September 22, 2011 | 0 comments

Do You Understand the Impact of the Individual Mandate?

Great article from Milliman explaining why something has to be done to address adverse selection in health reform. If it is not the individual mandate, what will it be? As Tom Snook, Principal & Consulting Actuary, Milliman Inc., says, people will operate in their own economic self-interest. If they are healthy and the cost of health insurance is high, they will not purchase health insurance, especially if it is not highly subsidized by their employer. If they are sick, they are more... Read More
Posted by Cristie Travis at Thursday, September 22, 2011 | 0 comments

Rules Issued for Women's Preventive Care

On August 1, the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) issued detailed guidelines ( http://www.hrsa.gov/womensguidelines/ ) for group health plans and health insurance issuers relating to coverage of preventive services under the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA). A fact sheet is also available at the HealthCare.gov portal. These guidelines supplement the IFR on general preventive care requirements... Read More
Posted by Cristie Travis at Monday, September 19, 2011 | 0 comments

Tax Treatment of Employer-Provided Health Coverage

Currently, the value of health insurance coverage provided by employers is not subject to payroll or income taxes. Recent budget calculations indicate that this is the federal government’s largest tax expenditure, at a cost of more than $1 trillion over the next five years (though this also includes the employer deduction of these costs as a business expense), and the Joint Tax committee has estimated the cost of the tax expenditure for the employee exclusion for health insurance... Read More
Posted by Cristie Travis at Monday, September 19, 2011 | 0 comments


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