What Insurers, Employers Expect for Group Health Plan Rates in COVID-19 Aftermath

| posted in Blog, Newsletter

A study has come out predicting that COVID-19, as devastating as it has been, will have little effect on 2021 group health plan rates, as well as offerings. The study, by eHealth Inc., also found that many insurers have increased utilization of telemedicine and that many of them are extending benefits related to coronavirus testing and treatment. Here are the main points of the study: Waiving COVID-19 testing costs ― 97% of insurer respondents say they are waiving out-of-pocket costs for coronavirus testing. Waiving treatment costs ― 58% of the insurers say they’re waiving out-of-pocket costs for COVID-19 treatment. Among insurers who…
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10 Potential Causes of Employee COVID-19 Lawsuits

| posted in Blog, Newsletter

The novel coronavirus has caused immeasurable suffering, both physical and economic. For employers struggling to stay in business, there are a number of ticking timebombs they must try to avoid to keep employees and customers safe, and keep their business afloat. With so much still unknown, this is a fraught time where mistakes in managing their workforces could lead to employee COVID-19 lawsuits. 10 Potential Causes of Employee COVID-19 Lawsuits Workplace safety Businesses that still have employees working on-site run the risk that a single infected worker may send the virus ripping through the entire workforce. While workers’ compensation laws…
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Workers’ Comp Claims For COVID-19 May Not Be as High as Expected

| posted in Blog, Newsletter

There is some good news coming out in terms of workers’ compensation claims for COVID-19 in California. Overall workers’ comp claims tied to the coronavirus may not be as numerous and as costly as originally thought. Gov. Gavin Newsom in early March announced that any worker who is reporting to a worksite in California and contracts COVID-19 will automatically be eligible for workers’ comp benefits on the presumption that it was contracted at work. This announcement came after the Workers’ Compensation Insurance Rating Bureau filed a recommendation for special rules that would exempt COVID-19 workers’ compensation claims from an employer’s…
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Concerns Rise Over Individual Coverage HRAs

| posted in Blog, Newsletter

Employers, health insurers, regulators and hospitals are all raising concerns about the Trump administration’s rules issued last year that allow employer-funded health reimbursement arrangements (HRAs) that employees can use to purchase health plans on the open market, called Individual Coverage HRAs (ICHRA). The rules continue to receive pushback from small business groups, insurers, regulators and others, who say that employers who want to go this route are facing a bureaucratic nightmare. One of the biggest concerns is that employers will use the opportunity to move older and sicker workers from their group health plans to exchanges, in order to reduce…
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Focus on Your Health During the COVID-19 Outbreak

| posted in Blog, Newsletter

Now more than ever you should make sure your body has the best fighting chance possible, and that means you should pay especially close attention to what you put into it and focus on your health during the COVID-19 crisis. Your body needs the right fuel to stay healthy, including a well-balanced diet and drinking plenty of fluids. The World Health Organization recommends that you eat a variety of fresh and unprocessed foods every day to get the vitamins, minerals, dietary fiber, protein and antioxidants your body needs. Drink enough water. Avoid sugar, fat and salt to significantly lower your…
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Protecting Employees During the Pandemic

| posted in Blog, Newsletter

If you are one of the companies that has been deemed an essential employer and are remaining open during stay-at-home orders, you should be doing all you can to protect employees against contracting COVID-19. While some workers are really on the front lines of fighting the disease, like health care workers and emergency services personnel, there are many other people working in factories, grocery stores, warehouse and transportation, among other industries, that are also at risk to varying degrees. The response to this has been varied. Some employers have taken steps to protect their workers. For example, some grocery stores…
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Some Insurers Step Up Group Health Plan Assistance

| posted in Blog, Newsletter

Some health insurers are helping workers who would otherwise lose health insurance maintain employee benefits during the COVID-19 pandemic, a new survey has found. Social distancing and stay-at-home orders have put the hurt on hundreds of thousands of businesses across the country, which has forced them to reduce employees’ hours, furlough them or lay them off. Besides all those employees seeing their pay drastically curtailed or disappear altogether, it also affects their employee benefits, with health coverage topping the list. With so many people concerned they may lose coverage and business owners equally worried about their employees, some insurers are…
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How to Protect Your Business Teleconference Meetings

| posted in Blog, Newsletter

Since face-to-face meetings are out of the question when most non-essential workers are under stay-at-home orders, many companies have opted for the teleconferencing app Zoom. With the recent revelation that Zoom’s teleconferencing system is not always the most secure, it is still one of the least expensive and user-friendly options for holding meetings during the coronavirus outbreak. Zoom has seen its user numbers explode during the pandemic, but that has left it exposed to a number of different types of attacks and other problems like videos being exposed on the web. There are many alternatives to Zoom, but if you…
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How to Support Your Mental Health In Isolation

| posted in Blog, Newsletter

As more and more of us are being told to either self-isolate with our families or self-quarantine under doctor’s orders, we are spending almost all of our time at home, inside. While this may keep you from getting a virus, it can also be tolling on your mental health. We’ve put together a few tips to support your mental health during isolation. Some of us will get cabin fever, especially those who live alone. Thanks to technology though, you can do different things to keep up socially with your friends and family. And there are also many low-tech ways to…
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5 Tips for Successful Telecommuting

| posted in Blog, Newsletter

As the coronavirus spread ramps up and more people are being asked to self-isolate, many employers are scrambling to put systems in place to allow their employees to telecommute. Telecommuting can keep your business on track, but you may need to make some changes to your business operations to ensure successful telecommuting. Many companies are not set up for telecommuting arrangements, and they have legitimate concerns about productivity, communications ― and even the possibility of workers’ comp claims stemming from home hazards that may not be typical in the workplace. But there are steps you can take to make sure…
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