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May 11, 2011

Today’s issue is brought to you by AIS’s Health Reform Week, the nation’s leading publication on the business implications of the massive changes for the health industry mandated by reform.

Today's Featured Story

Employers Face Major Costs on Mandates, Mull Benefit Changes Now, Plan Ends Later
Reprinted from AIS’s Health Reform Week

Health insurance reform mandates already in effect are having a major cost impact on midsized employers across the U.S., according to a new actuarial modeling analysis by Lockton Benefit Group. On average, employers with 2,000 to 10,000 employees tacked another 2.5% onto their health insurance costs since mandates went into effect last September — primarily due to reform requirements extending dependent coverage to age 26 and eliminating lifetime and raising annual coverage limits, the firm says. Moreover, costs related to these mandates are just the tip of the iceberg — to the point where many employers could consider termination of their plans in 2014 .... Read Full Story


From the AIS Blogs

When It Comes to PR, Big Oil and Health Insurers Must Scale Similar Slippery Slopes

There’s absolutely no relationship between the eye-popping $11 billion profit ExxonMobil earned in the first quarter and soaring prices at the pump, according to a March 30 statement issued by Ken Cohen, Exxon’s VP of public affairs. Cohen argues that state and federal taxes are the real culprit for $4-a-gallon gas. While that might be true, the public just isn’t buying it. ... Read more


Quote of the Day

“Remember – California pioneered managed care has by far the highest penetration of Medicare Advantage … and managed care for Medicaid and for the commercial market. When you look at the development of ACOs as conceived in the federal law, really its impetus is from decades of experience in California more than any other state.”

— Patrick Johnston, president of the California Assn. of Health Plans, told AIS’s ACO Business News.

Click here to read the ACO BUSINESS NEWS article in which this quote appeared. (Free for ABN subscribers; $17 for non-subscribers).


Today's Datapoint

$452 million…in 2010 sales were racked up by Sanofi-Aventis for its popular allergy-relieving antihistamine Allegra, which became available in March over-the-counter.

Click here to read the DRUG BENEFIT NEWS article in which this datapoint appeared. (Free for DBN subscribers; $17 for non-subscribers).


Today from Washington

People on the Move

Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Vermont named Robert Wheeler, M.D., chief medical officer (CMO). Wheeler was executive medical director at Regence BlueCross BlueShield in Utah....Ali Sonel was appointed CMO for VA Pittsburgh Healthcare System after serving as interim. Before this appointment, he served as VA Pittsburgh's associate chief of staff.


Today's Featured Health Business Job Opening

American Imaging Management
Health Care Strategy Consultant

Place Your Ad Here

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Register for the FIS Healthcare Payment Solutions webinar, Payer and Provider Collaboration – Strategies to Ensure Mutual Success – May 26, 2011; 2:00 p.m. EDT.

Upcoming Webinars

Optimizing Drug Benefit Plan Designs for the Coming Wave of Generic Competition
Tuesday, May 17, 2011

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Global Payments: Health Plan Strategies for the Brave New World of Accountable Care
Tuesday, June 14, 2011

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Strategies for Managing Part D Specialty Formulary Tiers
Wednesday, June 15, 2011

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Insurance Exchanges: How Health Plans and Employers Should Prepare for the Radical Changes Ahead
Tuesday, June 21, 2011

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Medical Loss Ratio Regs: What 2010 Data Suggest About Potentially Huge Rebates in 2011
Thursday, June 23, 2011

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ACO Results and Strategies: A Case Study in Three-Way Risk Sharing
Thursday, June 30, 2011

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Payer Strategies to Manage High-Cost Specialty Drugs That Will Hit the Market Soon
Thursday, July 14, 2011

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