WHAT'S IN THE NEWS?

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CEO of Conner Insurance Recognized as 2019 Rising Star in Advising

Posted on January 22, 2019 | Press Release

INDIANAPOLIS – Ben Conner, CEO of Conner Insurance has been named to the 2019 class of Rising Stars in Advisors by trade publication Employee Benefit Advisor (EBA). This designation recognizes young advisors, spanning in age from 20 to 35 years old, who represent the “next generation of leaders” from around the country. Conner, along with…
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IRS Announces Employee Benefit Plan Limits for 2019

Posted on November 26, 2018 | News to Know

BY Conner Insurance   Overview Many employee benefits are subject to annual dollar limits that are periodically increased for inflation. The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) recently announced cost-of-living adjustments to the annual dollar limits for various welfare and retirement plan limits for 2019. Although some of the limits will remain the same, many of the…
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Proposed Rule Would Expand Options for HRAs

Posted on November 23, 2018 | News to Know

BY Conner Insurance   Overview On Oct. 23, 2018, the Departments of Labor (DOL), Health and Human Services (HHS) and the Treasury (Departments) issued a proposed rule that would expand the usability of health reimbursement arrangements (HRAs). Effective in 2020, the proposed rule would: Allow HRAs to be used to reimburse the cost of individual…
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3 trends and 4 survival tips for managing millennials in 2019

Posted on November 13, 2018 | News to Know

BY Dan Cook   If anyone knows more about millennials than an actual millennial, it’s Brian Weed, CEO of Avenica. Founded in 1998, Avenica’s personnel services are focused exclusively on recent college graduates and the companies who are looking for such talent. “Our goal is to place recent college graduates on the right career-track, finding…
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Bye Bye Cadillac Tax, Hello Congressional Health Care Gridlock

Posted on November 12, 2018 | News to Know

BY Dan Cook   In an ironic post-election development, a key piece of the original funding mechanism of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act could finally be dispensed with because of the House of Representatives power shift. The excise tax on employer health plans–known colloquially as the Cadillac Tax–was designed to fund the subsidies…
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PCORI Fee Amount Adjusted for 2018

Posted on November 6, 2018 | News to Know

BY Conner Insurance   Overview The Affordable Care Act (ACA) imposes a fee on health insurance issuers and self-insured plan sponsors in order to fund comparative effectiveness research. These fees are widely known as Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute (PCORI) fees. On Nov. 5, 2018, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) published Notice 2018-85, which increased the…
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10 Worst States for Healthcare

Posted on November 2, 2018 | News to Know

BY Nick Otto   For employers, both large and small, being knowledgeable about regional health challenges —such as high costs or poor quality — can give them an edge when it comes to crafting the best benefit policies to attract and retain talent. They have help from new research out from personal finance site Wallethub,…
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10 Best States for Healthcare

Posted on November 2, 2018 | News to Know

BY Nick Otto   In just a few short months, open enrollment begins and many employees may be looking to enhance their benefits. Knowing where states excel, alongside where they don’t, can help employers have the best plans in place to meet the needs of their workers. Personal finance website Wallethub has compared the 50…
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The 15 Most Popular Employee Perks

Posted on October 28, 2018 | News to Know

BY Kathryn Mayer Forget onsite gyms, health coaching and pet-friendly offices. The most coveted employee benefits have to do with time away from the workplace. That’s the conclusion of a poll of 1,227 working adults from benefits provider Unum, which found that the most desired perks have to do with flexible work options and absence…
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Determining Whether Prescription Drug Coverage Is Creditable

Posted on October 23, 2018 | News to Know

BY Conner Insurance   Employers that provide prescription drug coverage to individuals who are eligible for Medicare Part D must inform these individuals and the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) whether their prescription drug coverage is “creditable.” A group health plan’s prescription drug coverage is considered creditable if its actuarial value equals or…
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Health plans differ greatly in their approach to specialty drug use

Posted on October 21, 2018 | News to Know

BY Katie Kuehner-Hebert   Not all health plans treat coverage for specialty medications equally – in fact, they’re all across the board, according to the report, “Specialty Drug Coverage Varies Across Commercial Health Plans In The US,” published in Health Affairs. Indeed, only 15.9 percent of drug coverage policies are consistent across the largest U.S. commercial health plans, and…
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CVS-Aetna deal given go-ahead by U.S. antitrust regulators

Posted on October 20, 2018 | News to Know

FROM Bloomberg News   CVS Health Corp. and Aetna Inc. can go ahead with their about $68 billion deal, the Justice Department said, clearing the way for a merger that will create a health-care giant with a hand in insurance, prescription-drug benefits and drugstores across the United States. A previously planned sale of Aetna’s Medicare…
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3 strategies for reducing pharmacy costs

Posted on October 19, 2018 | News to Know

BY Rob Piazza   Nearly 30 percent of employers in a recent National Business Group on Health survey ranked specialty pharmacy drugs as a top driver of health care costs. As more high-priced drugs enter the market, employers must keep a closer eye on it as part of an overall cost-savings strategy. For employers and brokers trying…
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Hospital profits in Indianapolis were high, study finds. Why that’s not good for us

Posted on October 19, 2018 | News to Know

BY Shari Rudavsky   Hospitals in central Indiana enjoy a higher profit margin than those elsewhere because they overcharge insurers, which results in employers and consumers paying more for care than they should, a recent study concludes. The study, published last month in the International Journal of Health Economics and Management, used a publicly available…
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Employees’ health care burden growing 8 times faster than wages

Posted on October 18, 2018 | News to Know

BY Emily Payne   When the Kaiser Family Foundation started tracking employer health benefits 20 years ago, employee deductibles weren’t a concern. Over the years, though, the survey has adjusted to reflect not just the growing percentage of employees with a deductible (85 percent in 2018) but the growing amount of that deductible ($1,573 for an individual in…
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