Is Obamacare repeal over?

Posted by Emily Kubis on Mon, Feb 12, 2018 @ 07:02

Repeal train slows, but what’s next?

Is the GOP giving up on Obamacare? Healthcare stakeholders and political news entities are suggesting as much. Forbes reports “insurer profits rise as Trump waves white flag on Obamacare,” noting the President mentioned Obamacare only once during his State of the Union address.

Politico reported there were no discussions of repeal and replace at a recent House and Senate joint retreat, and BenefitsPro said Republican leaders in the House and the Senate see a lot of risk and little reward in trying repeal again.

While hardly anything is certain when it comes to U.S. healthcare policy, if the GOP does move on to new priorities in 2018, where does that leave brokers and employers?

Here are three things employers should consider.

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Tags: Affordable Care Act, obamacare, aca, employers, health insurance small employers, employer digest, employee benefit adviser, repeal and replace

How Bernard Health helps employers control their healthcare costs

Posted by Emily Kubis on Mon, Feb 05, 2018 @ 07:02

Software, strategy, service

Want to take control of your healthcare costs while giving employees more options than ever before? We can help.

Bernard Health goes above and beyond what other agencies can provide, and we do it through a three-pronged approach, providing solutions in software, strategy and service.

Here’s how Bernard Health helps employers and their employees.

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Tags: employers, health insurance small employers, employer digest, employee benefit adviser

What to do after completing 1095-Cs

Posted by Gretchen Smitson on Wed, Jan 31, 2018 @ 06:01

Steps for employers 

You've gone through the pain of completing your 1094-C and 1095-Cs and the deadline to file and distribute is quickly approaching. What should you do to make sure you deliver the right documents to the proper location?

Here is everything you need to know about staying compliant in your distribution and filing oforms 1094-C and 1095-C:

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Tags: HR, employers, health insurance small employers, hr software, employer digest, employee benefit adviser, tax withholding

What is self-insurance?

Posted by Emily Kubis on Mon, Jan 22, 2018 @ 07:01

What employers should know

What is a self-insured health plan? This is an alternative to a “fully-insured” health plan, and is another option employers have for funding their group health plan.

The major difference between self-insured and fully-insured plans are in regards to who operates the plan, and who pays the claims. With self-funded insurance, the employer operates the plan and pays the claims. With fully-funded insurance, the insurance company operates the plan and pays the claims.

The big benefit of self-insurance is the savings potential. Because employers pay the claims, they reap the benefit of low-claim years.

Employers might hear that they are responsible for claims and immediately balk at the idea of self-insuring. “What if we have a really bad month, or really bad year?” Typically, employers are responsible for claims up to a certain threshold, and they carry stop-loss insurance for claims that exceed that threshold. This reduces claims pressure in a self-funded plan.

So how does it work?

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Tags: employers, health insurance small employers, Self-Insured, employer digest, employee benefit adviser, self-funded, self-funding, self-insured lite

New tax withholding tables and deadline released

Posted by Emily Kubis on Fri, Jan 19, 2018 @ 09:01

Employers must implement by Feb. 15

The IRS announced this week the new income tax withholding tables for 2018, reflecting changes made by the GOP’s Tax Cuts and Jobs Act.

Employers should begin using these new tables as soon as possible, but they must be implemented by February 15. Organizations should continue using the 2017 withholding tables until they have implemented the 2018 tables.

There are still seven federal income tax brackets, but the rates have been slightly lowered and income ranges have been adjusted.

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Tags: HR, employers, health insurance small employers, hr software, employer digest, employee benefit adviser, tax withholding

What HR data should I track?

Posted by Emily Kubis on Mon, Jan 08, 2018 @ 07:01

Spot trends with analytics

According to Paycor’s 2017 HR Trendcast, HR leaders are most worried about finding and keeping talent. With unemployment rates at record lows, many organizations are struggling to find the right people.

When thinking about improving your HR strategies in 2018, data-driven decision making can make a big difference in your approach to recruitment and retention. But in order to make those data-driven decisions, you first have to track the right metrics.

Here are five data points to track when it comes to recruitment and retention:

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Tags: HR, employers, health insurance small employers, hr software, employer digest, employee benefit adviser

Three tips for recruitment and retention

Posted by Emily Kubis on Wed, Dec 06, 2017 @ 10:12

How to find and keep talent

What are HR leaders most concerned about? With unemployment rates at record lows, finding and keeping talent is the biggest concern HR departments face right now.

According to the HR Trendcast published by Paycor, 45 percent of HR leaders are worried about recruiting and retention.

As your organization gears up for 2018, here are three tips for taking your recruitment and retention strategy to the next level in the coming year.

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Tags: HR, employers, health insurance small employers, hr software, employer digest, recruitment, employee benefit adviser, retention

How much do employees spend out-of-pocket?

Posted by Emily Kubis on Wed, Nov 29, 2017 @ 09:11

Consumer spending on the rise

Families spent an average of $714 on out-of-pocket healthcare costs in 2016, a figure which is growing at an annual rate of 4.3 percent.

According to JPMorgan Chase, for every dollar spent on healthcare, families paid 11 cents out-of-pocket and 28 cents after insurance costs, according to a new study by JPMorgan Chase.

Where are consumers paying the most out-of-pocket? The study found average out-of-pocket dental costs are the highest, at $465. Doctor, dental and hospital spending accounted for more than half of all out-of-pocket costs.

The rise in out-of-pocket spending has a significant impact on consumers’ financial well-being. ‘Extraordinary’ medical payments are associated with 9 percent higher credit card debt a year later, the report found. Further, roughly 52 percent of all debts in collection are medical debts.

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Tags: employers, health insurance small employers, hr software, employer digest, employee benefit adviser, out-of-pocket costs

How Bernard Health stays ahead of industry trends

Posted by Emily Kubis on Mon, Jul 24, 2017 @ 07:07

Investing in brokerage growth

Bernard Health continues to invest its time, energy and money to learn and share best practices with peer advisors from all over the country, most recently attending the Agency Growth Mastermind Summit in Philadelphia.

Through the two-day conference, which convenes practice leaders of more than 30 top employee benefit firms, and its membership in the Agency Growth Mastermind Partnership, Bernard Health is committed to offering industry-leading service.

"Bernard Health is proactive in following industry trends in order to ensure we’re offering our clients the best, most up-to-date strategies,” said Brian Tolbert, who leads Bernard’s team of employer advisors. “We’re constantly learning, making sure we’re doing everything we can to stay at the forefront of our industry.”

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Tags: Bernard Health, employers, employer digest, Brian Tolbert

What are "Centers of Excellence" networks?

Posted by Emily Kubis on Wed, Jun 07, 2017 @ 11:06

The next level of reference based pricing for employers

Walmart has made healthcare headlines over the last few years with their innovative “Centers of Excellence” program for employees. 

For employees needing certain surgeries—most recently, spinal surgery was added to the list—Walmart will pay for the entirety of the procedure, as well as travel, lodging and an expense allowance for the patient and a caregiver.

To take advantage of this benefit, eligible employee must receive the procedure at one of the company’s “Centers of Excellence” facilities around the country.

 GE and Lowe’s also offers a similar Centers of Excellence program—but why, and how do they work?

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Tags: employers, solutions for employers, health insurance small employers, employer digest, reference based pricing

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