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Most Read Benefits Management News

Anthem CFO says insurer could make 'meaningful' acquisition

Published May 19, 2015 CST

(Reuters) — The financial chief of Anthem Inc., the second-largest U.S. health insurer, said on Tuesday that low interest rates and other conditions make it a good time for an acquisition, adding to speculation about merger activity in the sector.

(subscription required)Social media offers employers new routes for benefits communication

Published May 10, 2015 CST

When Pacific Sunwear of California Inc. launched its wellness campaign last September, the clothing retailer found the biggest obstacle was reaching employees in its more than 600 stores nationwide.

Employer, benefits groups lobby IRS for changes to Cadillac tax

Published May 20, 2015 CST

Employer advocates and benefits consultants this week asked the Internal Revenue Service to delay implementation of the federal health care reform law's so-called “Cadillac tax” on high cost health care plans, due to take effect in 2018.

Benefit consultant urges Cadillac tax delay

Published May 18, 2015 CST

The effective date of a health care reform law provision that will impose, starting in 2018, a 40% excise tax on group health care premiums that exceed $10,200 for single coverage and $27,500 for family coverage should be delayed, a benefit consultant is recommending.

Employers find savings, service in telemedicine

Published May 19, 2015 CST

MINNEAPOLIS — Though still a relatively new technology, telemedicine is becoming a more viable option for companies looking to temper health care spending, speakers said Tuesday at World At Work’s Total Rewards 2015 Conference and Exhibition in Minneapolis.

CEO's doughnut decision leads to wellness engagement

Published May 20, 2015 CST

MINNEAPOLIS — The success of corporate wellness programs depends on a combination of executive leadership and simplicity, speakers said Wednesday at World At Work’s Total Rewards 2015 Conference and Exhibition in Minneapolis.

Employer advocacy group calls for Cadillac tax leniency

Published May 18, 2015 CST

The ERISA Industry Committee has asked federal regulators to take into consideration the “unfortunate” and “unnecessary” frustrations it says employers will face as a result of the 40% excise tax on high-value group health care plans, due to take effect in 2018 under the health care reform law.

Prescription drug costs drive increase in health care expense

Published May 19, 2015 CST

A sharp surge in prescription drug costs helped push health care costs for families covered under an average employer's health insurance plan up an estimated 6.3% in 2015, according to a new report by Milliman Inc.

AIG expands into multinational benefits

Published May 20, 2015 CST

American International Group Inc. on Wednesday said it has acquired a controlling stake in Brussels-based ING Employee Benefits Global Network and renamed it AIG Global Benefits Network.

High court hands win to employees in Edison International 401(k) dispute

Published May 18, 2015 CST

(Reuters) — The U.S. Supreme Court on Monday revived claims made by Edison International employees who accused the utility of favoring higher-cost mutual funds over lower-cost ones in its retirement plan.

CVS to buy pharmacy services provider Omnicare for $10.1 billion

Published May 21, 2015 CST

(Reuters) — CVS Health Corp., the second-largest U.S. drugstore operator, said on Thursday it will buy pharmacy services provider Omnicare Inc. for $10.1 billion to expand in the growing market serving the senior patient population.

Supreme Court investment monitoring ruling opens questions

Published May 19, 2015 CST

The U.S. Supreme Court's decision that retirement plan fiduciaries have a duty to continually monitor investments leaves a key issue of what exactly they have to do unresolved, industry observers say.

California broker acquires benefits consulting firm

Published May 19, 2015 CST

Insurance broker Edgewood Partners Insurance Center has acquired Los Angeles-based employee benefits consulting firm Executive Financial Inc.

Guidance sought for multiemployer pension plan cuts

Published May 18, 2015 CST

A group of Senate Democrats is asking the U.S. Treasury Department to develop guidance on a 2014 federal law that allows trustees of financially troubled multiemployer pension plans to cut participants' benefits.

Treasury benefits regulator to be nominated as next PBGC chief

Published May 21, 2015 CST

President Barack Obama said he intends to nominate W. Thomas Reeder, health care counsel at the Internal Revenue Service, to be director of the Pension Benefit Guaranty Corp.

Employers stick with offering health plans

Published May 14, 2015 CST

Virtually all employers offering group health care plans say they will continue to provide coverage next year, according to a new survey.

Illinois Supreme Court strikes down pension reform law

Published May 08, 2015 CST

The Illinois Supreme Court ruled Friday the Illinois pension reform law passed in 2013 is unconstitutional, affirming the decision reached in a Sangamon County Circuit Court in November.

Risk of losing cash can motivate smokers to quit, but there's a catch

Published May 15, 2015 CST

A new study comparing the effectiveness of smoking cessation strategies offers some insight on human behavior but little clear-cut guidance for employers and policymakers.

Firefighters' pension contribution hike dies in Texas Assembly

Published May 22, 2015 CST

A bill to increase Houston firefighters' pension contributions and save the city more than $70 million in pension payments over the next three years fell apart after failing to reach a full vote of the Texas General Assembly before the legislative session ended.

Industry lobbyist leaves for insurer leadership post

Published May 21, 2015 CST

Karen Ignagni, the longtime head of America's Health Insurance Plans, is leaving the industry's lobbying group to become president and CEO of EmblemHealth, an insurer based in New York.

(subscription required)Cost-shifting health care plan strategies can backfire

Published April 26, 2015 CST

Poorly managed high-deductible health plans may do the very thing they were designed to avoid — increase their sponsoring employers' long-term health care costs.

Oregon pension ruling will hurt state, city budgets, Moody's says

Published May 05, 2015 CST

(Reuters) — A recent decision by the Oregon Supreme Court overturning cuts to public pensions is a "credit negative" that will hurt the budgets of both the state and its cities, Moody's Investors Service Inc. said in a report Tuesday.

Number of Americans using $100,000 in medicines triples

Published May 13, 2015 CST

(Reuters) — More than a half-million U.S. patients had medication costs in excess of $50,000 in 2014, an increase of 63% from the prior year, as doctors prescribed more expensive specialty drugs for diseases such as cancer and hepatitis C.

Defined contribution health care pairs with self-insurance

Published May 10, 2015 CST

New health care plan models brought about by the health care reform law are challenging employers to find options to rein in costs. Joseph Berardo Jr., CEO of health care services company MagnaCare, discusses how self-insuring health care and moving toward a defined contribution model can help curb spending.

Multipronged approach urged for employee diabetes care

Published May 14, 2015 CST

Employers should consider patient-centered medical homes, on-site primary care clinics, pharmacist-led care, convenience clinics and centers of excellence when tackling diabetes in the workplace, according to a report by the Northeast Business Group on Health.