Senate Report Examines Exploding Drug Prices

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Recent headlines on the exploding cost of prescription drugs have not gone unnoticed by Washington D.C. lawmakers.  The United States Senate Special Committee on Aging has issued a 130 page report examining the cost increases to previously affordable drugs that were acquired by pharmaceutical companies off patent.

Traditionally, the prescription drug industry recouped the cost of research and development by holding a new drug’s patent and being the sole manufacturer for a period of years before generic production was allowed ...

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QSEHRA Revives Employer Payment Plans For 2017

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On December 13, 2016, President Obama signed the 21st Century Cures Act into law. Called “the most important bill of the year,” the bipartisan Act makes changes to a wide range of healthcare issues. These include allocating billions for cancer research, easing the FDA drug approval process, and allowing doctors to test medical devices without a patient’s informed consent in certain situations. One item that will be of interest to finance and human resource professionals at small employers ...

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DOL proposes changes to Form 5500

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The U.S. Department of Labor plans to revise Form 5500 to require insurers and health plans to report more information. The proposed changes focus on five broad goals: modernizing financial reporting, providing greater information regarding group health plans, enhancing data mineability, improving service provider fee information, and enhancing compliance with ERISA and the tax code. One element that is sure to attract the attention of smaller employers is a proposal to eliminate the exemption ...

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SHRM releases 20th annual employee benefits survey

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The Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) released the 20th anniversary edition of its annual benefits survey on June 20th at the SHRM 2016 Annual Conference and Exposition in Washington, D.C. The survey looks at the popularity of various benefits and highlights statistically significant differences between the results of this year’s survey and results from last year, five years ago, and the initial 1996 survey.

Methods

This year’s survey comes from the responses of HR professionals ...

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Study finds Wisconsin has high healthcare prices

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A study released this month by the nonprofit Health Care Cost Institute found that Wisconsin has the second highest healthcare prices among the 41 states it surveyed. The study was based on claims data from UnitedHealthcare, Aetna, and Humana, which the Institute said represents 34% of total commercial claims in Wisconsin. The study found that prices in Wisconsin for over 200 common medical services were on average 81% higher than the national average, and that the ...

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New Provider-Carrier Partnerships Expand Across Wisconsin

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The first four months of 2016 have already seen three new partnerships announced between Wisconsin health systems and insurance companies. Looking down the road, it appears that provider-led health plans may soon become a major force in Wisconsin health insurance.

In January, Aspirus and WPS Health Solutions announced that they are forming a new health insurance company in north-central Wisconsin that will be called Aspirus Arise Health Plan of Wisconsin. In April, Anthem Blue Cross and Blue ...

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2016 HR Awards Winners Announced

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The Milwaukee Business Journal has announced the winners of its second annual HR Awards!

The HR Awards program is intended to recognize the best human resources programs or practices that have had a positive impact on employees and the overall organization. In addition to receiving cash prizes provided by Mueller QAAS CEO Jim Mueller, the winners will be celebrated at an awards ceremony at the Pfister Hotel Friday May 20.

Please join us in congratulating the ...

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Scam Targets Payroll and HR Professionals

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Earlier this month, the IRS issued an alert to payroll and HR professionals to watch out for a scam that aims to obtain employees’ personal information. The scam is a form of a “phishing” email in which a cybercriminal pretends to be someone they are not in order to trick the victim to install malicious software or send money or valuable information.

In this particular scheme, criminals are targeting payroll and HR professionals by purporting to be ...

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Last Chance for 2016 HR Awards Nominations!

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The nomination deadline for the 2016 HR Awards is March 11, 2016. If you know an HR professional or team in Southeastern Wisconsin who deserves to be recognized, please nominate them at MilwaukeeBusinessJournal.com.

The HR Awards recognize the important work individuals, companies and organizations do in the field of human resources to make southeastern Wisconsin firms and organizations successful. In addition to receiving cash prizes, the winners will be honored at an awards dinner on May 20 and will ...

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