QSEHRA Revives Employer Payment Plans For 2017

Posted by:

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 ...

Continue Reading →
0

DOL proposes changes to Form 5500

Posted by:

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 ...

Continue Reading →
0

New Provider-Carrier Partnerships Expand Across Wisconsin

Posted by:

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 ...

Continue Reading →
0

Is Retail Medicine Really a Smart Choice?

Posted by:

Smart Choice MRI and ThedaCare announced this month that the Appleton-based health system is investing $3 million in the Mequon-based stand-alone MRI provider. In the announcement, ThedaCare’s senior vice president of Systems of Care Support, Keith Livingston, described the partnership as a collaboration with a competitor that is “consistent with our need to learn how to better meet consumers’ needs in the evolving retail health marketplace.” Livingston also told the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel that “[h]ealth care ...

Continue Reading →
0

Drug Costs Continue To Rise

Posted by:

Although the rate at which overall health costs are rising is historically low, employers, experts, and politicians are expressing alarm at the rising cost of prescription drugs. According to a recent Aon analysis, the average health care rate increase for mid-size and large companies in 2015 was 3.2%. Prescription drug costs, however, jumped by 10% last year according to a report by Truveris that was publicized by the Business Health Care Group.

In general, hospital expenses account ...

Continue Reading →
0

Willis Looks to Lift Consulting Business With Acquisitions

Posted by:

Large insurance companies like Aetna and Humana are not the only goliaths that are joining forces these days. A number of insurance brokers and consulting firms have been actively pursuing mergers and acquisitions to create synergies and growth opportunities. Willis Group Holdings plc, the London-based parent of Willis North America, has been particularly active this year.

Willis announced plans in January to combine its wholesale insurance brokerage units with Miller Insurance Services LLP. At the time, Willis CEO Dominic Casserly said ...

Continue Reading →
0

Aetna-Humana merger drives fee-based model

Posted by:

With Aetna poised to acquire Humana in 2016, industry observers have noted how industry consolidation generally and Aetna’s growing market share in particular will lead more intermediaries to adopt a fee-based compensation model. Although fee-based compensation for intermediaries is not a new concept, it is far less common than traditional commission based compensation. However, it appears increasingly likely that fee-based compensation will become much more widespread in the coming years.

Traditionally, insurance agents and brokers have been paid for ...

Continue Reading →
0

2016 Rate Review Submissions Filed

Posted by:

The Affordable Care Act (ACA) requires individual and small group rate increases that exceed 10% to be published, reviewed, and approved by state or federal regulators. This requirement does not apply to grandfathered health plans that predate the ACA. This rate review process is one of two ways the ACA addresses the issue of health plan costs, with the 80/20 Medical Loss Ratio being the other.

Rates for 2015 and 2016 are now available for public viewing at Continue Reading →

0

Arise to offer AboutHealth plans

Posted by:

AboutHealth, one of two new health system partnerships in Wisconsin, recently announced plans to sell health plans to individuals and employer groups through a co-branding agreement with Arise Health Plan. Early announcements from AboutHealth have focused on efforts to improve clinical integration and cooperation among its members. The agreement with Arise marks the first instance in which AboutHealth member systems have negotiated a single contract with a health insurance company.

Arise Health Plan is a wholly owned subsidiary of ...

Continue Reading →
0

Broker, Insurer Revenues Rise as Uninsured Rate and Wages Fall

Posted by:

With tax day just one week away, many Americans are being reminded that 2014 was the first year they will have to pay a penalty for not having health insurance. The requirement to get health coverage is leading more and more people to sign up for health insurance and helping to reduce the rate of the uninsured. At the same time, these new customers are helping to bolster profits at the largest brokerages and insurance companies. The cost ...

Continue Reading →
0
Page 1 of 2 12