ConsumerDrivenMarketReport 11/09/2012

CDH market notes…

·         Last Enrollment Before ObamaCare Kicks In CDH plans are aggressively marketing their products in what amounts to the last open enrollment period before 2014 PPACA reforms kick in and several large health exchanges ramp up.  Brokers may be the first to feel the heat given that the MLR limit is not recognizing their fees, a change which has caused a large-scale loss of business already. New risks: large states like California which may exclude high-deductible plans, the ‘fiscal cliff’ talks on Capitol Hill which may limit tax deductions like FSAs, the coming flat premium tax on insurers which hits all types of coverage, and the Cadillac Tax which limits deductibility.

·         Simplee Grows, Adds Medicare  The fastest-growing payment source for OOP costs announced this week it is adding Medicare payments to its app, which already allows payments from multiple other payers. Simplee and ACS cut a deal in May for HSA account holders to pay claims out of  their accounts, and several large national insurers allow claims to be paid. “We believe the service improves consumers’ understanding of their consumer-directed health plans and enables them to take charge of their healthcare expenses,” ACS explained. Simplee now counts half a billion dollars in “member medical visits” and that 60 percent of the members use the site at least once every three months.  Although the firm says it wants to link medical data from providers to its platform, that’s extremely unlikely given current technology.

·         Michigan Blues Hit By Lawsuit Over HRA-HSA Blocking A policy of automatically denying Medigap  plan coverage to people with an HRA or HSA is being challenged in Detroit by a lawsuit against the state Blues plan.  The suit says seniors from Ford and Chrysler who had accounts are being denied coverage. “Federal and state law prohibits all insurers from denying the sale of Medigap policies to any eligible Medicare recipient,” the attorney filing the case told local media. Federal and state law also prohibits insurers from discriminating in the sale of their Medigap plans.

·         Golden Rule Insurance Company has expanded its online resource site www.HSAcenter.com to include a detailed retirement health care savings comparison, new case study, list of updated qualified medical expenses and 2013 contributions and deductibles. In addition, www.HSAcenter.com offers three interactive calculators to estimate health insurance savings, tax savings and future value as well as answers to the most frequently asked questions (health savings account FAQs).

 

© Interpro Publications Inc. 2012

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