Health Plans

  • Off-exchange options flew under enrollment radar

    April 10, 2014

    While all eyes had been on HIX enrollment numbers during the ACA’s first open-enrollment period, millions of Americans also chose health insurance options off the exchange. What does this mean for adverse selection and future premium pricing?

  • More employers embracing ACA provisions in health plan designs

    April 4, 2014

    While it’s not surprising that in 2013 the trend of employers shifting rising health care costs to employees continued to grow, it also appears employers have begun to design health care plans with looming Affordable Care Act provisions in mind.

  • Premium increases slowing down: ADP

    April 4, 2014

    After a sharp increase of 6.9% from 2010 to 2011, health plan premiums rose at a rate of 1.7% between 2013 and 2014, according to data from ADP.

  • Why it's not too late for employees to get on the exchange

    April 3, 2014

    Yes, the ACA open-enrollment deadline has passed. No, that doesn’t mean employers cannot terminate or change their health plan — because employees can still enroll on the exchange.

  • Cost a main reason for Americans remaining uninsured

    April 2, 2014

    A majority of Americans remain uninsured and many based the decision to stay uninsured on the cost of coverage, with many not even visiting an exchange to see a price estimate, a new study from consultancy Market Strategies International finds.

  • 10 drugs to watch

    April 2, 2014

    Overall spending on traditional prescription drugs — mostly pills used to treat common conditions such as high cholesterol and depression — will decline 4% by the end of 2015, largely because of the availability of generic medications, according Express Scripts. Here are 10 of the top brand-name drugs that had generic equivalents become available in 2013 or are expected to have generics available this year, courtesy of Express Scripts.

  • Threat of ACA penalties could spike future exchange enrollments

    March 31, 2014

    Going uninsured is about to get very expensive. New estimates by NerdWallet show the minimum amount of lifetime penalties for someone who is uninsured is more than $36,000.

  • Hispanics favor ACA, need more enrollment information

    March 28, 2014

    Most Hispanics have a favorable view of the Affordable Care Act, but need more information about it to understand the law and how to enroll in the health insurance exchanges, HolaDoctor, a leading health website for Hispanics, says.

  • Agents have many questions about ‘troublesome’ ACA rollout

    PODCAST | March 27, 2014

    John Prible, vice president of federal government affairs for the Big “I,” talks to EBA about industry concerns over the rocky ACA implementation, the association’s efforts to reform the agent licensing process and other top 2014 priorities.

  • Public opinion divide on ACA narrows

    March 26, 2014

    Americans are becoming less divided about the Affordable Care Act, as the gap between favorable and unfavorable views of the law has narrowed among both the general public and the uninsured, a new survey finds.

  • 45 states receive failing health care price transparency grade: study

    March 26, 2014

    A new report card tracking health care price transparency finds that 45 states failed to offer essential information to consumers shopping in the U.S. health system, a significant step back since easier-to-understand public health solutions were to have become the norm in this post-Affordable Care Act world.

  • ACA triggers voluntary benefit sales boom

    March 25, 2014

    Voluntary benefit sales are enjoying rapid growth as employers prepare for the impact of the Affordable Care Act by revamping their medical plan designs to include more products such as accident and critical illness benefits.

  • Supreme Court hears Hobby Lobby ACA challenge

    March 25, 2014

    A divided U.S. Supreme Court Tuesday debated whether companies can assert religious rights, hearing arguments in an ideological clash over the Affordable Care Act and rules that promote contraceptive coverage.

  • Towers Watson’s group annuity cuts retiree medical cost risks

    March 24, 2014

    Through a new group annuity program, Towers Watson may have found a solution to retiree medical costs – a burgeoning problem for employers. The option eliminates the financial risk from the table and limits the administrative burdens linked to the benefit.

  • Private health exchange interest fueled by finance, not HR

    March 21, 2014

    Employers across the country may be expecting to offset higher health care costs through private health exchanges and boosting wellness offerings. However, HR leaders interviewed in a new PricewaterhouseCoopers report say that the push to private exchanges is being fueled by C-suite executives and not benefits professionals.

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