Daily Insurance Report, Walt Bernard Podgurski,  Editor,  440-773-1108, 
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Editorial Mission Statement: The goal of this publication is to provide readers a broad selection of what is being written about the insurance industry and related issues. Some articles have a “tilt” towards a particular perspective one way or another. Inclusion in this newsletter is not an endorsement of any views or content; but report the various and differing views appearing in media.
  Daily Insurance ReportMonday, 11/20/17

As a not-for-profit religious community..our average member contributing about $350 a month.
By Ted Squires | Fox News
Our ministry, Medi-Share, was founded upon this principle in 1993, and today we help more than 300,000 people share each other's medical costs. In that 24-year window of time, our members have shared over $1.4 billion of health-care expenses within our community and saved an additional $690 million through discounts we've directly negotiated with providers on our members’ behalf.
We've managed to do all this with our average member contributing about $350 a month.
As a not-for-profit religious community, we do our work exclusively as a service to society. And contrary to the largely impersonal experience that is the American health-care system, we strive to make our members feel like they're part of an extended family.

Life / Health / Employee Benefits

If conservatives vote yes on the comprehensive tax bill – they can make the health insurance mandate disappear.
A no-labels look at Obamacare
Martin Schram is an op-ed columnist for Tribune News Service.
If conservatives vote yes on the comprehensive tax bill – they can make the health insurance mandate disappear. And Obamacare will be in shambles. Conservatives will get a Republican revenge. And President Donald Trump will get a win (which is all he wants, no matter what havoc it creates).
But to properly tell this truth for our 52 targeted Senate Republican readers – since they have only a few days to decide how to vote on this now doubly-complex tax/healthcare bill – we must first remove all the labels.
Why? Because that’s the only way to show that nothing that is about to happen makes any sense at all. But it will begin to make sense when I tell you about the day I first discovered that health care mandate idea that conservatives love to vilify as the liberal Obamacare mandate.
It was March 1992, and at one of Washington’s most respected think tanks, experts proudly handed me their new health care plan: “The Consumer Choice Approach.” It said, “Americans are allowed to choose the health care plan they want.”
It promised that there was a reasonable, market-based way to provide all Americans with health insurance – including those with pre-existing conditions (the most costly to cover). This was the key, the plan said: “Require all households to purchase at least a basic package of insurance, unless they are covered by Medicaid, Medicare, or other government health programs.”
The think tank I was inside was the conservative, highly respected Heritage Foundation, reading, “The Heritage Consumer Choice Health Plan.”

Report: Trump open to dropping healthcare provision in tax bill
U.S. President Donald Trump would not insist on including repeal of an Obama-era health insurance mandate in a bill intended to enact the biggest overhaul of the tax code since the 1980s, a senior White House aide said on Sunday.
The version of tax legislation put forward by Senate Republican leaders would remove a requirement in former President Barack Obama's signature healthcare law that taxes Americans who decline to buy health insurance.
"If we can repeal part of Obamacare as part of a tax bill ... that can pass, that's great," White House budget director Mick Mulvaney said on CNN's "State of the Union" on Sunday.
"If it becomes an impediment to getting the best tax bill we can, then we are O.K. with taking it out," Mulvaney said.

Now making money on Obamacare, Humana still plans to quit exchanges
By Chris / WDRB.com
In February, when Humana announced it would completely withdraw from the Obamacare exchanges, the company predicted it would lose $45 million on the plans in 2017, its final year in the business.
Humana said it would abandon the exchanges on the same day that the company formally withdrew from its planned merger with rival Aetna, which fell apart due to opposition from the Obama administration’s Justice Department.
But Humana now expects to earn $150 million in pretax income in 2017 from its individual business, which primarily includes Obamacare exchange plans, chief financial officer Brian Kane told investors on the company’s quarterly conference call last week.
The turnaround comes after the company shrank its individual business to a small fraction of previous years. Humana now covers only 142,800 people in individual plans as of Sept. 30, down from 726,200 at the same time last year.
The company shed unprofitable markets, raised premiums on remaining plans and pared back its presence to 11 states, down from 15 last year.

3 Top Risks For Healthcare Investors
The unwinding of decades of health care inflation is going to be painful.
Contrary to popular belief, an aging population isn’t a good thing.
The proposed tax reform bill before Congress has bullish and bearish catalysts.
During a recent call with investors, Healthcare sector head Tom Tobin outlined the top three ideas his analyst team is watching closely.
6:55 Video

SunTrust: Companies Look to Boost Financial Fitness This Benefits Season
Dozens of progressive companies are now offering financial well-being programs to promote financial confidence among their employees and more employers are looking to add the programs to their roster of benefits.
A recent study by the National Center for the Middle Market (NCMM), sponsored by SunTrust Banks, Inc. (NYSE: STI), found that 77 percent of middle market companies (annual revenue of $10 million - 1 billion) are concerned about the financial security of their employees. As a result, they cited financial well-being programs as the top new benefit they will look to add, outpacing new retirement, healthcare, and parental leave benefits.
"Companies are no longer ignoring the emotional toll financial stress takes on employees and the negative impact it has in the workplace," said Brian Ford, Financial Well-Being executive at SunTrust. "Based on our experience, not only do benefit programs that help people become more financially confident improve employee satisfaction, but also they can also increase productivity and be a differentiator to attract and retain employees."

Losing your pension? CalPERS wants to shift blame to cities
The proposed legislation shows that CalPERS “would like someone else to deliver the bad news when local governments quit paying their bills and put a retiree’s pension in jeopardy,” reported the Sacramento Bee. CalPERS is capable of keeping pensioners posted, but there’s nothing wrong with giving retirees additional information given the months of uncertainty they endured.
But the CalPERS proposal doesn’t go nearly far enough. Any new law ought to include myriad other disclosures, too. Namely, retirees — and maybe taxpayers, too — ought to be informed about the size of the state’s pension debt and the frighteningly low rate at which CalPERS is funded. They ought to be told why public services are gutted and local taxes keep going up.

Is your organization on the leading edge of the benefits evolution?
By Miles Varn / ebn
The primary change in the benefits market is one of focus. Benefits used to take the wide view, providing standardized offerings communicated to employees via standardized, mass mailings or emails. Service and support were provided by large call centers, where employees were all treated the same way. From the employer perspective, one of the major focuses of benefits plans, especially health plans, was to contain costs.
But as employees have become more involved and informed partners in their healthcare, what they’re demanding from their health insurance benefits has changed. Rather than a standardized set of benefits offerings and a generic service and support experience, they seek more targeted, personalized options.

United Benefit Advisors Welcomes New Ireland Partner Firm, Glennon Employee Benefits & Financial Planning
Posted by Carrie Brunner / NBHerard
United Benefit Advisors (UBA), the leading independent employee benefits advisory organization in the United States, is pleased to welcome Glennon Employee Benefits & Financial Planning (Glennon) as its newest Partner Firm. Located in Dublin, Ireland, Glennon has been delivering independent, professional, creative and competitive insurance, and risk management solutions for more than 60 years. Glennon’s success is due to the quality and efficiency of their services and their ability as a team to deliver total client satisfaction. Locally, Glennon is a member of Brokers Ireland, and internationally is a member of the Worldwide Broker Network.

Zego picks up £6M Series A led by Balderton for its gig economy worker insurance
Steve O'Hear / TechCrunch
Zego, the London-based startup that appears to have spotted a gaping insurance hole in the so-called gig economy, has raised £6 million in Series A funding. The round was led by Balderton Capital, with participation from existing backers, including LocalGlobe and unnamed angel investors in the insurance sector. The company plans to use the new capital to increase engineering and other headcount as it launches further insurance products and expands internationally.
Founded by Harry Franks, Sten Saar and Stuart Kelly in 2016, Zego has set out to re-invent commercial insurance for self-employed people, with a particular focus on contractors powering various parts of the gig economy. Its first product is pay-as-you-go scooter and car insurance for food delivery workers utilising platforms such as the Deliveroos of the world.
Unlike traditional insurance, which can work out prohibitively expensive as a proportion of income for food delivery drivers who may only work part time and even sporadically, Zego charges by the hour, with drivers only buying cover for when they are logged in to the various on-demand food ordering services they contract for.

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