Two Minute Blog

More on the Impact of Anthem’s Data Breach

And What’s Being Done to Protect Those Affected…

After attending a meeting, corresponding with an Anthem representative, and monitoring their website for updates, here’s more information on who’s at risk from the recent cyber attack and what steps Anthem is taking to control the potential harm to those whose data was compromised:

Anthem’s Data Breach: What you should know and what we are doing about it.

As you likely already know, Anthem’s database was recently hacked. It appears that nearly all Anthem product lines were impacted. Anthem, the country’s 2nd largest health insurance carrier, reports that member information for some 80 million individuals may have been compromised in the attack. We should assume that all current and former Anthem customers are vulnerable and may have been affected.

Those Anthem plans and brands directly impacted include Anthem Blue CrossAnthem Blue Cross and Blue ShieldBlue Cross and Blue Shield of GeorgiaEmpire Blue Cross and Blue ShieldAmerigroupCaremoreUnicareHealthlink and DeCare.

Want the Key to Controlling Your Personal Health Spending?

Healthcare consumerism is good. We should all work to get better at it. Transparency tools that are provided by the carriers and by innovative up and comers like CareTrader can be quite helpful. We should take advantage of these tools and use them wisely.

But, if you really want to control your personal healthcare spending, get the best bang for your healthcare buck and achieve the best possible medical outcome, your best bet is to PICK THE RIGHT DOC.

Why?

Lots of Medicare Questions From Employers and Employees This Year

…Here are the ABC’s (and Part D)

For whatever reason – aging workforce, increasing costs, heightened awareness because of ACA – we’re getting lots and lots of questions from clients and their employees about Medicare this year. Way more than in years past. The vast majority of questions are about the basics.

And, it’s easy to get confused about what’s what. So thought it might be helpful to put together a cheat sheet of sorts about the basics. Here’s a quick summary of the ABC’s (and Part D’s)…

Wolf in sheep’s clothing? Average rate increases on 2015 Obamacare plans

Moderate “average” rate increases for 2015 exchange plans over 2014 exchange plans have been widely reported in the press and elsewhere.  Well here’s another “not so fast my friend!”

Many folks who purchased ACA plans in 2014 on the exchange may be surprised when they get their January invoices.

Here’s how the wolf disguised as sheep reference plays out.

The “average rate increases” (increases spread across all plans offered without regard to market share) that some experts are proclaiming and the media is reporting are masking a more practical barometer of how policyholders are impacted.

Trick or Treat…which do you prefer in your healthcare?

For a little Halloween fun, I’ve compiled a few articles that have to do with healthcare tricks and treats. All related to Obamacare, or the Affordable Healthcare Act, of course…

Trick: Gov. Kasich’s four Obamacare tricks by Washington Examiner

Treat: Ebola: Obamacare’s ultimate pre-existing condition by The Fiscal Times

Trick: Government close to closing loophole that lets employers offer substandard insurance by The Washington Post

Stripped Down Plans without Any Hospital Benefits?  “Not so fast my friend!”

In last week’s Did You Know Series on Obamacare we pointed out a major glitch or loophole in the healthcare law that actually may allow large employers to avoid health-law penalties by offering stripped down plans that have no hospitalization coverage. Well, in the words of colorful former college football coach and current ESPN College Game Day host Lee Corso “Not so fast my friend!”

STOP

While there’s no official word yet, it sure sounds like this loophole was a screw up, is now on the administration’s radar screen and is likely to be fixed soon. We’ll continue to keep you posted on developments as they unfold. For more about this, here’s the link to a recent article on this topic from Kaiser health News that also appeared in The Washington Post.

Obamacare…Did you know? #4

Here is my final post in the Obamacare…Did you know? series…

Many low-income consumers who bought bronze plans with low premiums but high deductibles in order to comply with Obamacare’s individual mandate are discovering they still can’t afford health care. Reports are that many with insurance coverage purchased on the exchange are returning to the community health centers for treatment. Community health centers cannot turn anyone away. Wonder if the narrow networks that are associated with the exchange products and the well documented problems with these networks including the limited number of providers participating have also had an impact on this?

headache

Read Some say Obamacare’s affordable coverage isn’t affordable for them

A recent Associated Press-GfK poll that finds that nearly 75 percent of Americans find healthcare reform  “difficult” and nearly half say it is “very hard” to understand.

Health insurance is both expensive and complex.  We work for many great employers who work hard to provide strong coverage to employees while covering much of the cost.  These employers provide leadership, guidance, and pay for a substantial share of the employee’s premium, if not all of it. Their employees should be thankful that they don’t have to wade into current individual market quagmire, most especially the exchanges, to find their own way.

Obamacare: Did you know #1

Obamacare: Did you know #2

Obamacare: Did you know #3

Facebook Iconfacebook like buttonTwitter Icontwitter follow buttonVisit Our LinkedIn Profile