Daily Insurance Report - Walt Bernard Podgurski

Daily Insurance Report  
Walt Bernard Podgurski,  Editor,  440-773-1108, 
Walt@DailyInsuranceReport.com 

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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 may 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.
  Friday, 06/14/19 - https://DailyInsuranceReport.com 

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The "Daily Insurance Report" publishes the life insurance, health insurance, and employee benefits news that matters.

Florida Company Sued Over Sales of Skimpy Health Plans
By Maddie McGarvey for The New York Times

The two policyholders have filed a lawsuit in federal court against Health Insurance Innovations, based in Tampa, Fla., accusing the company of misleading them about the kind of policy they were buying.

They say they believed they were purchasing Affordable Care Act plans that include coverage guarantees. But they were sold much less comprehensive coverage that left them vulnerable to tens of thousands of dollars in unpaid medical bills, according to the lawsuit.

Their complaints underscore problems with some types of cheaper health insurance alternatives that the Trump administration has expanded. Critics of the government’s decision, including the Association for Community Affiliated Plans and the National Alliance on Mental Illness, are also suing the Trump administration over relaxation of rules for these plans.

“This isn’t real insurance,” said Jason Kellogg, one of the lawyers representing the individuals in the Florida case. They are seeking class-action status, estimating that as many as 500,000 people may have bought these policies.



‘Death by a thousand lawsuits’: The legal battles that could dog ‘Medicare for All’
By DARIUS TAHIR and ALICE MIRANDA OLLSTEIN / POLITICO

The road to health reform always ends up under a pile of lawsuits. “Medicare for All” would be no different.

Championed by Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) and other progressive Democrats, Medicare for All faces enormous political obstacles — not the least of which is a major industry lobbying effort against the plan and anything that resembles it. But should it ever become law, it would also invite constitutional challenges. Just like the lawsuits targeting Obamacare — not to mention the blue state challenges against all sorts of Trump administration anti-Obamacare initiatives — the legal battles could directly threaten or undermine the new system for many years.

In particular, the single-payer bill's ban on most private health insurance — a huge U.S. industry employing millions of people — would be an instant legal quagmire. And a host of other issues, including abortion rights enshrined in the legislation, could easily produce another wave of lawsuits.



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Healthcare freedom or free everything?
by Rep. Daniel Webster / Washington Examiner

For two congresses, I have introduced legislation with Rep. David Schweikert, R-Ariz., that targets one of the chief drivers of healthcare spending: taking care of those who are very sick. This works by allowing insurance companies to identify their small percentage of high-cost patients and place them in the Invisible Risk Sharing Program. This program reimburses insurance companies for those patients’ healthcare expenses above a certain dollar amount. The result is that every patient has access to affordable health insurance coverage at the lowest possible rates, as if they were perfectly healthy.

The Federal Invisible Risk Sharing Program would be funded annually with $15 billion federal dollars and 90% of premiums collected from the patients that the insurers designate for the program. Insurers will be required to cover the first $7,500 of their patients’ expenses, after which the risk pool funding kicks-in. Because it requires insurers to contribute most of the premiums received from their high-risk patients, it removes incentives to game the system.

This bill, H.R. 2789, is a proven way to achieve the goal of providing every American access to affordable healthcare. I am committed to advocating for policies and programs that get government off the back of hardworking Americans, empower them, and improve their opportunity to achieve success and the American Dream. Such proposals help ensure that America remains a shining city on a hill, holding high the torch of freedom and liberty.

Daniel Webster represents Florida's 11th Congressional District in the U.S. House of Representatives.



The U.S. health care system is full of monopolies
Sam Baker / AXIOS

Even the behind-the-scenes parts of the health care industry are dominated by a small handful of companies — and critics say that drives up prices for everyone.

Why it matters: The U.S. spends more than any other industrialized country for health care, largely because our prices are higher. And the monopolies that support those high prices could undermine both liberal and conservative dreams of a more efficient system.

The big picture: This is a trend that's happening at every level.

Hospital systems continue to merge with each other and gobble up doctors’ practices, which lets them charge more for the care they provide.
Insurers and pharmacy benefit managers are also merging, and are now on track to bring in more revenue than the tech industry's biggest powerhouses.
Yes, and: That trend toward concentration extends throughout the system, even into sectors that most patients never directly interact with, according to new data from the Open Markets Institute, shared first with Axios.



How to leverage total rewards statements to attract, retain employees
By Michael Puck / ebn

Here are a few items to start your brainstorming process on what you might want to include in your new and improved total rewards statement (obviously only if they apply to your organization):

· Flexible work hours
· Volunteer time
· Work from home options
· Discounted pet insurance
· Choice of IT equipment
· Tuition reimbursement
· Access to online learning options for personal interest
· Gym access
· Child care options
· Unlimited PTO
· Charitable giving matching
· Pet-friendly workplace
· Free snacks/food
· Employee organized affinity groups
· Sponsored company events
· Free onsite urgent care clinic
· Lunch with senior leaders
· Concierge services, expanded EAP
· Social hours
· Access to social network (Facebook at work / Chatter)
· Bi-directional performance rating system
· Mentorship programs
· Easy shift changes
· Scheduling tools to provide greater control over work-life balance
· Consumer-grade apps to get the job done



New Study Looks at Benefits as a Driver of Top Bank Talent
ABA BANKING JOURNAL

A comprehensive benefits program that includes an executive plan may tip the scales for candidates considering multiple job offers, according to a new study by Pentegra, which is endorsed by ABA for retirement plan services. Based on a survey of retirement and executive benefit plan trends among bank employees, the study also showed that a bank’s total rewards package is a key competitive resource for employee retention.

401(k) plans were far and away the most popular type of qualified retirement program, with just under 80% of respondents offering them to employees. Just under 20% offered ESOPs, while just over 20% offered profit-sharing plans. A majority—73%—reported offering bank-owned life insurance, primarily to help offset some or all of the expenses related to their employee benefit programs.



Is Your Association Prepared for Employees' New Benefits Expectations?
By: Brian Haney / asae (The Association For Association Leadership)

The gig economy has changed the dynamics of the workforce and created new expectations surrounding benefits. Knowing what’s expected and communicating well can help your association come out on top in the benefits arena.

The gig economy has dramatically changed employee expectations by offering a better blend of work and life. Gig workers, who typically work per project, want three things, according to a 2019 MetLife study: a flexible schedule, the ability to work where they want, and the ability to take on multiple different projects. This mindset has seeped into the overall work culture and shifted the paradigm for traditional workers, who now don’t just live to work; but work to live. Recognizing that employees need the flexibility and support to not only manage but also enrich their lives means employee benefits can take on a powerful new role: that of supporting people personally and professionally.

Changes Have a Common Theme

While the emerging benefits trends may seem new and different, they are emblematic of employee’s core needs. According to that MetLife survey previously mentioned, the most important benefits to employees have two things in common:

They play a central role in helping them achieve their personal goals.
They address their main stressors, particularly around personal finances and family health, which often intersect.





Archives

Monday, 06/10/19 - Regulators must scrutinize advice by insurance agents

Tuesday, 06/11/19 - METLIFE LOOKS TO PARTNER WITH 16 STARTUPS THROUGH NEW EVENT

Wednesday, 06/12/19 - Colonial Life leads voluntary benefits industry in sales growth – again

Thursday, 06/13/19 - I Sold Aetna To Fix A Broken Healthcare System. Here’s Why.

Friday, 06-07-09 - Younger Workers Put Student Loan Aid Near Top of Desired Benefits
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Walt Bernard Podgurski - - Editor
440-773-1108
Walt@DailyInsuranceReport.com