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India moves closer to insurance market reforms

Published November 24, 2014 - 9:58am CST

(Reuters) — India’s main opposition Congress party signaled on Monday it could support government legislation to liberalize the insurance industry, a long-delayed reform expected to help improve investor confidence.

Airmic welcomes vote to modernize U.K. terrorism reinsurance backstop

By: Sarah Veysey

Published November 24, 2014 - 9:24am CST

Airmic Ltd., the U.K. risk management association, has welcomed a vote by the members of Pool Reinsurance Co. Ltd., the United Kingdom’s government-guaranteed terrorism backstop, to implement changes that it believes will make Pool Re more attractive to insurance buyers.

China says controls on Internet needed to maintain stability

Published November 19, 2014 - 11:08am CST

(Reuters) — Chinese officials called on Wednesday for controls on the Internet to preserve stability, saying its model for cyberspace regulation can be the framework for spawning commercial successes like Alibaba Group Holding Ltd.

EEOC private-sector bias charges decrease in 2014: Report

By: Judy Greenwald

Published November 18, 2014 - 12:13pm CST

The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission received a total of 88,778 private-sector charges of discrimination in fiscal year 2014, a decrease of about 5,000 from fiscal year 2013's total, according to a report issued by the agency Tuesday.

FTC asking Apple about health data protection

Published November 14, 2014 - 11:23am CST

(Reuters) — The Federal Trade Commission is seeking assurances from Apple Inc. that it will prevent sensitive health data collected by its upcoming smartwatch and other mobile devices from being used without owners' consent, two sources told Reuters.

Most German insurers prepared for new capital rules: Watchdog

Published November 12, 2014 - 9:35am CST

(Reuters) — Germany’s life insurers are mostly prepared for tougher European capital rules coming in from 2016 that aim to shield policyholders from future financial crises, financial watchdog Bafin said.

Florida insurance commissioner rejects 3.3% comp rate cut for 5.2% decrease

By: Stephanie Goldberg

Published November 07, 2014 - 12:54pm CST

The Florida insurance commissioner on Wednesday rejected a 3.3% overall decrease in state workers compensation rates and ordered the National Council on Compensation Insurance Inc. to re-file an overall rate cut of 5.2%.

Health plans that fail ACA minimum value test to get one-year pass: IRS

By: Jerry Geisel

Published November 04, 2014 - 10:18am CST

Group health care plans that do not provide coverage for hospital care will not pass the health care reform law's “minimum value” test, but the Internal Revenue Service is giving a one-year pass to existing or soon to be implemented plans excluding the coverage.

European insurance sector calls for renewal of insurance block exemption rule

By: Sarah Veysey

Published November 04, 2014 - 10:03am CST

Insurers and reinsurers in Europe have called upon the European Commission to renew the Insurance Block Exemption Regulation, which exempts insurers from certain European Union competition rules, when it expires in March 2017.

Federal judge blocks new HHS workaround for birth-control coverage

By: Lisa Schencker, Modern Healthcare

Published October 30, 2014 - 9:44am CST

A federal judge in Florida on Tuesday jumped into the latest round in the legal wrangling over a Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act provision involving birth-control coverage and how it applies to religious institutions.

Murder-suicide exposed training, communications gaps

By: Judy Greenwald

Published October 29, 2014 - 4:25pm CST

The need to improve staff training and communications are among lessons learned following a murder-suicide at a hospital in Pennsylvania, a hospital executive said Wednesday.

Canada tightens train handbrake rules, will impose 'audit blitz'

Published October 29, 2014 - 11:10am CST

(Reuters) — Canada will require railways to secure unattended trains with a minimum number of handbrakes and other physical defenses to prevent runaways, Canada’s transport ministry said on Wednesday in its latest response to last year’s deadly crash in Quebec.

U.S. airlines point to additional problems of any Ebola travel ban

Published October 29, 2014 - 9:32am CST

(Reuters) — U.S. airlines have said little publicly about political pressure to close the country's borders to travelers from Ebola-ravaged countries in West Africa, but in private they have briefed government officials about the challenges to implementing a ban, industry sources told Reuters.

Q&A: Scott D. Buchholz, Dummit, Buchholz & Trapp

By: Judy Greenwald

Published October 29, 2014 - 6:00am CST

Scott D. Buchholz, a partner at law firm Dummit, Buchholz & Trapp in San Diego, spoke with Business Insurance Senior Editor Judy Greenwald about some risks associated with accountable care organizations set up as a result of the federal health care reform law. Edited excerpts follow.

Training, simplified processes trim hospital lab errors

By: Judy Greenwald

Published October 28, 2014 - 9:30pm CST

Training hospital staff to have patients state their name and birth date before a specimen is taken and refusing to accept specimens before they are properly labeled are effective ways to reduce diagnostic errors, an expert said.

Medical liability claims flat, but loss rates rising

By: Judy Greenwald

Published October 28, 2014 - 7:41pm CST

Hospitals will not be “fighting fires” concerning their professional liability insurance costs next year, said a co-author of a just-released study on the issue. “Things are pretty flat; things are pretty benign," said Erik Johnson.

Engage families to improve patients' care: Panelists

By: Sheena Harrison

Published October 28, 2014 - 4:56pm CST

Health care organizations should engage the families of patients to improve medical outcomes and experiences while reducing potential medical provider liabilities, a group of medical experts said Tuesday.

MetLife to contest super-risky tag Monday

Published October 28, 2014 - 3:33pm CST

(Reuters) — MetLife Inc. will plead against being branded a super-risky financial firm at a meeting next week with regulators, a company spokesman said, as the U.S. insurer tries to escape oversight by the Federal Reserve.

Fed revises risk management policy for clearing, settlement firms

Published October 28, 2014 - 1:11pm CST

(Reuters) — The U.S. Federal Reserve said on Tuesday it has revised its policy which sets the risk management standards for the country’s largest clearing, payment and settlement firms.

Captives may help with emerging Ebola, cyber risks

By: Sheena Harrison

Published October 27, 2014 - 5:42pm CST

Captives can be a useful tool to help insure and manage emerging threats in the health care industry, such as cyber risks and the Ebola virus, a panel of captive and health care industry experts said Monday.

Malpractice suits often tap electronic medical records

By: Judy Greenwald

Published October 27, 2014 - 4:22pm CST

Electronic medical records can save money and improve medical outcomes, but using them incorrectly can create significant liability problems for health care providers, medical malpractice defense attorneys said.

U.S. safety regulators probe Chrysler Ram pickup recalls

Published October 27, 2014 - 3:11pm CST

(Reuters) — U.S. safety regulators have opened an investigation of Chrysler Group’s handling of two recalls for potential steering issues affecting nearly 1 million Dodge Ram pickup trucks in the United States.

San Francisco health care spending requirement adjusted for managers

By: Jerry Geisel

Published October 27, 2014 - 2:53pm CST

Managerial, supervisory or confidential employees who earn at least $90,745 in 2015 are exempt from a San Francisco law that requires employers to spend a certain amount of money on their employees’ health insurance.

Senators want rules on corporate pension de-risking

By: Jerry Geisel

Published October 23, 2014 - 1:36pm CST

The chairmen of two Senate committees are asking the heads of several federal agencies to develop guidance on one of the hottest defined benefit pension plan trends: employer moves to “de-risk” the plans.

Justice Department to increase focus on cyber threat, economic espionage

By: Judy Greenwald

Published October 22, 2014 - 12:33pm CST

The Justice Department is making strategic changes to put additional focus on the protection of national assets from the threat of state-sponsored economic espionage and proliferation, including through cyberspace.

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