Nearly Half of American Workers Purchased at Least One New Health Benefit in Response to the COVID-19 Pandemic
Aflac survey finds life insurance is the top new health benefit added to health coverage plans.
Aflac / PRNewswire / / Read Article

With open enrollment season upon us, new data shows U.S. employees now believe the expansion of health care coverage, telemedicine and supplemental insurance is more important today because of the pandemic. According to the 2021 Aflac WorkForces Report, almost half (44%) of all U.S. employees purchased at least one new health benefit in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, with half of those adding life insurance. Roughly, one-third of respondents said they purchased critical illness, hospital indemnity, telehealth services or mental health resources.

Aflac, a leading provider of supplemental insurance and products in the U.S., conducted its 11th annual, national online survey of 1,200 benefits decision-makers and 2,000 employees across the U.S. The objective of the survey is to capture industry trends and the attitudes of American employers and employees regarding the state of health care benefits in America.

The survey found that those respondents who had tested positive for COVID-19 were more likely than other respondents to purchase at least one new health benefit. Specifically:

38% purchased life insurance vs. 16% without a COVID-19 diagnosis.
29% purchased hospital vs. 9% without a COVID-19 diagnosis.
26% purchased critical illness vs. 12% without a COVID-19 diagnosis.
24% purchased mental health services vs. 10% without a COVID-19 diagnosis.


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Views Best practices to facilitate a successful benefits rollout
By David Kilby / ebn / / Read Article

Here are some simple best practices you can employ to ensure your organization facilitates a successful rollout with ongoing employee engagement:

1. Work closely with your benefit provider to create a thoughtful rollout plan.
2. Determine how benefit materials that meet the language requirements of your workforce will be placed in hand for all employees — onsite and remote.
3. In your launch communication, include all programmatic offerings available to ensure participants are aware of the holistic offering.
4. To increase engagement and perceived value, share the good news in person or via teleconference.
5. Provide employees with personalized recommendations and direct them to the solutions that best fit their needs.

The successful rollout of a new employee benefits program requires an intentional plan and a motivated team to execute the launch and administer ongoing awareness and engagement. The reward is recognized in increased retention, productivity and improved well-being of the organization’s workforce and demonstrates your sincere commitment to the overall well-being of your employees.

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The wealthiest 10% of Americans own a record 89% of all U.S. stocks
Robert Frank / CNBC / / Read Article


The wealthiest 10% of Americans now own 89% of all U.S. stocks, a record high that highlights the stock market’s role in increasing wealth inequality.

The top 1% gained over $6.5 trillion in corporate equities and mutual fund wealth during the pandemic, according to the latest data from the Federal Reserve.

The bottom 90% of Americans held about 11% of stocks, and added $1.2 trillion in wealth during the Covid-19 pandemic.

You Get The Results You Reward
BY KEVIN TROKEY / / Read Article

Many agencies are at a complete loss as to why they aren’t getting the results they need. The frustration builds when they can’t get their team to change behaviors necessary to produce those results. Figuring out why they don’t change isn’t rocket science, my friends.

Like I always say, "Any organization that rewards its high performers the same way it rewards average performers will, very soon, find itself with a whole bunch of average."

So look no further than your compensation model(s). You must reward (financially) the behaviors that drive the results you need.

Friday Health Plans Partners with W3LL to Enrich Broker and Consumer Shopping Experience
W3LL / PRNewswire / / Read Article

Friday Health Plans (Friday), a health insurance company focused on Affordable Care Act (ACA) plans for individuals and families, has partnered with W3LL, a private exchange direct enrollment platform, to power online health plan sales for broker and consumers. The streamlined broker and consumer experience through W3LL will be live for the 2022 open enrollment period for ACA health plans this fall.

Friday achieved robust membership growth of more than 400% in 2021, and currently serves more than 80,000 members in Colorado, New Mexico, Nevada, and Texas. Expansion plans for 2022 include markets in Georgia, North Carolina, Oklahoma and additional counties in Colorado and Texas.

Healthcare Bluebook and Scripta Insights Partner to Deliver the Ultimate Member Cost Containment Solution to Reduce Medical & Pharmacy Out-of-Pocket Spend
Scripta Insights / PRNewswire / / Read Article

Healthcare Bluebook, an industry leader in guiding patients to high-quality affordable care using objective cost and quality data, and Scripta Insights, the pharmacy cost-containment experts whose advanced technology and proprietary clinical data sets empower companies to take control of their pharmacy benefit spend while helping members get The Right Meds at The Best Price™, today announced a partnership to offer self-insured employers, healthcare providers and payers the ultimate member out-of-pocket cost containment solution. Bluebook added Bluebook Rx, powered by Scripta, to its suite of cost containment products this September, giving clients an unprecedented one-stop shop for quality medical and pharmacy savings in a single platform.

Bluebook Rx is a member savings benefit that provides patients and their doctors with the critical missing pricing information that's needed to be a better prescription shopper. Using Scripta's exclusive drug savings database and savings strategies, Bluebook Rx reviews a member's current prescription medications, identifies utilization of overpriced medications, and recommends comparable alternatives in place of high-cost drugs based on pricing on their insurance plan.

Foresters Financial boldly redefines life insurance through innovation, wellness, and purpose
The Independent Order of Foresters / PRNewswire / / Read Article

Foresters Financial, the fraternal life insurer recognized by its commitment to enrich family and community well-being, reported 37% year-over-year growth in U.S. life insurance sales in the first three quarters of 2021. This milestone follows its record 23% annual growth in 2020 when Foresters strengthened its digital ecosystem to support virtual sales during the first waves of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Foresters attributes this trajectory to its life insurance with a larger purpose strategy: harmonizing turnkey-decisioned, mobile-enabled products with a suite of socially relevant, wellness-centric member benefits. Deploying this strategy, Foresters is re-defining the conventional life insurance model, and quickly bridging the $25 trillion mortality protection gap(1) to deliver a better, new normal for everyday American families.

"The Foresters commitment to a full suite of non-face-to-face, simplified issue life insurance proved an indispensable asset to agents serving everyday American families through COVID-19," said Matt Berman, President of Foresters Financial US. "This represented 90% of Foresters total U.S. business in 2020."

Online Tool Helps Medicare-Medicaid Beneficiaries Evaluate their Health Care Options
National Council on Aging / PRNewswire / / Read Article

The National Council on Aging (NCOA), the national voice for every person's right to age well, is offering a powerful tool that helps individuals who are dually eligible for Medicare and Medicaid make more informed decisions about which health plans best meet their needs. Originally developed for California by The SCAN Foundation, NCOA has adopted the My Care, My Choice tool and plans to make it available to beneficiaries and Medicare counselors in other states through a grant from the U.S. Administration for Community Living (ACL), starting first with Ohio.

Available in California and Ohio, My Care, My Choice helps individuals who are dually eligible for Medicare and Medicaid make more informed decisions about which health plans best meet their needs.
Available in California and Ohio, My Care, My Choice helps individuals who are dually eligible for Medicare and Medicaid make more informed decisions about which health plans best meet their needs.
For individuals dually eligible for Medicare and Medicaid, understanding how the two programs work together and the care choices available to individuals can be confusing. Californians eligible for both programs have used My Care, My Choice to learn about coverage options that best meet their needs and preferences.

"The nearly 13 million Americans eligible for both Medicare and Medicaid deserve clear, person-focused information about the care choices available in their state, particularly during the fall Medicare Open Enrollment period," said Dr. Sarita A. Mohanty, President and CEO of The SCAN Foundation, a public charity devoted to transforming care for older adults. "We are thrilled that NCOA has adopted the My Care, My Choice platform, expanding beyond California to Ohio, to highlight the person-centered care choices and benefits individuals care about the most."

Facebook to hire 10,000 people in EU to build the 'metaverse'
By Walé Azeez / CNN Business / / Read Article

Facebook (FB) plans to hire up to 10,000 workers in Europe to build a "metaverse" that will combine virtual and augmented reality technologies in a new online realm.

The US tech giant announced the recruitment drive on Sunday, saying it would take place over five years. Facebook said the investment was a "vote of confidence" in Europe's tech industry and its workers.

Metaverse cheat sheet: Everything you need to know
by Veronica Combs in Innovation / TechRepublic / / Read Article

Is the metaverse the same as VR? Which companies are building the metaverse? What is the metaverse's connection to hybrid work? Get answers to these questions and much more in this metaverse primer.

Is metaverse the latest buzzword easily dismissed or a new platform you might have to understand? That's the most important question about the metaverse right now. The easiest answer is "vaporware," but that ignores the business reality of 2021. The biggest tech companies are pouring a lot of money into this next iteration of the internet, and, the building blocks of the metaverse are available on the market.

Here is a look at what the metaverse is, why it's relevant to your work and what components you can experience right now.

The metaverse is a vision for a new place to interact with other humans and bots to play games, conduct business, socialize and shop. That's the metaverse of the future. Right now, the metaverse is a grab bag of hardware, software and unrelated experiences. You likely have seen one piece of the metaverse in a standalone form, as a game or maybe a training session. There is no connective tissue to bring all these components together–yet.

Photo Of the Day

Monday, 10/18/21 - - Here are 5 benefits of a health savings account that you may not know about

Tuesday, 10/12/21 - - New York’s largest private employer, is sidestepping traditional insurance companies for health care benefits

Wednesday, 10/13/21 - -
Is the Fight for $15 Going to Cost Low-wage Workers Their Health Insurance?

Thursday, 10/14/21 - -  The Public Backs Medicare Rx Price Negotiation Even After Hearing Both Sides’ Views

Friday, 10/15/21 - -
Walgreens Boots Alliance Makes $5.2 Billion Investment in VillageMD to Deliver Value-Based Primary Care to Communities Across America


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