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Articles by Charlotte Huff

New Law Requires a Rework of Health Risk Assessments

April 20, 2010
The Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act prohibits the collection of any individual’s genetic information—including family history—for any purposes related to insurance underwriting. According to the interim final rules that implement the act, it also stipulates against using any incentives to encourage the completion of a health risk assessment or participation in a wellness program. Some employers have already scrubbed family history questions from their assessments.
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Demystifying High-Deductible Plans

February 10, 2010
Intel’s strategy was to convince employees to consider plan facets other than just the core high deductible element, including lower premiums, preventive care coverage and the accrual of a health account. After three years of year-round education and communication, enrollment in a high-deductible plan linked to a health savings or health reimbursement account rose from 14 percent to 49 percent.
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Taking a Tailored Approach to Dental Benefits

November 23, 2009
Evidence-based dentistry is changing how some employers offer dental benefits to employees. The plans more closely align coverage not only with the individual’s dental history, but even with other non-dental conditions, such as diabetes or heart disease. By providing broader coverage upfront, the goal is to forestall or prevent more costly dental work later.
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Preparing for an IT Talent Squeeze

October 1, 2009
IT employers, take note: The federal government’s tight time frame for computerization, along with a steep implementation curve, will require more IT workers for health care organizations—soon. Job projections range from at least 41,000 positions to more than 200,000.
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Teaming Up to Better Train

May 20, 2009
Managers at The Decc Co., a small industrial coating applicator based in Grand Rapids, Michigan, were ready to move beyond the company’s paper tracking system. But when officials started training workers in late 2008 on the new computerized system, they quickly recognized that some weren’t even comfortable manipulating the mouse.
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