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Benefit Design and Communication

Most Employees Say Benefits Enrollment Information Lacking: Survey

August 24, 2012
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Fifty-two percent of workers indicated their employers have not distributed any communication regarding upcoming open enrollment periods. Thirty-nine percent said they were only somewhat prepared for open enrollments, while 26 percent said they were unprepared or very unprepared.
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Mid-Market Companies Face Health Benefits Enrollment Challenges

August 20, 2012
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One challenge for middle-market companies is the U.S. Department of Labor has yet to finalize the regulations implementing the mandate in Section 1511 of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act. In fact, the labor department already has said that its automatic enrollment guidance will not be ready to take effect by 2014.
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Opinion: Business Leaders Have a Chance to Step Up and Fix Health Care

August 14, 2012
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In the marketplace, employers' relationship with health care must be guided not only by the compassion of human resources but by the hard-headedness of finance and risk management.
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Senate Panel Approves Bill to Increase Mass Transit Contribution Tax Break

August 7, 2012
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The provision is included in a broader bill, the Family and Business Tax Cut Certainty Act, approved Aug. 2 by the Senate panel on a 19-5 vote.
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Is Patient Health Taking a Hit Under High-Deductible Plans?

August 1, 2012
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High-deductible health plans have been touted as a savvy behavioral tool to motivate enrollees to more closely scrutinize the price tag of imaging tests, brand-name drugs and more. But at what point does the hefty deductible discourage employees and their families from getting potential health problems checked out or treated?
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Employers Play Key Role in Educating Workers on Health Plan Choices

August 1, 2012
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'People who were confused about what was covered [outside of the deductible] were more likely to cut back on care,' one researcher says.
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Most Employers to Offer Health Plans to Employees in Near Future

July 24, 2012
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The findings are similar to those last month from the International Foundation of Employee Benefit Plans, which found that 85 percent of respondents said they definitely would or were very likely to continue coverage.
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Law Will Cut Defined Benefit Pension Contributions, but Increase PBGC Premiums

July 11, 2012
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Employers will continue to value plan liabilities based on interest rates on top-rated corporate bonds for three different segments, averaged over 24 months. Segments refer to when benefits are paid to participants.
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Ford Retirees Criticize Lump-Sum Payment Offer Vs. Monthly Pension Checks

June 28, 2012
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The Ford Actions Impacting Retirees Alliance hired a team of lawyers, consultants and accountants to review the proposal Ford made this month, and in a letter to its members, advised against accepting the buyout, the Detroit News reported.
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A New Remedy Emerges for Spiraling Health Costs

June 22, 2012
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Accountable care organizations require payers—i.e., insurers—and health care providers to better coordinate care for members, especially those with the most medical needs, with the goal of improving cost trends and patient outcomes. Providers typically share in savings reaped from better coordinated care and lower costs, and they must meet and maintain quality standards.
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