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Walt Bernard Podgurski,  Editor,  440-773-1108, 

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Editorial Mission Statement: The goal of this publication is to provide readers a broad selection of what is being written about the insurance industry and related issues. Some articles may have a “tilt” towards a particular perspective one way or another. Inclusion in this newsletter is not an endorsement of any views or content; but report the various and differing views appearing in media.
  Friday, 12/06/19 - https://DailyInsuranceReport.com 

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The "Daily Insurance Report" publishes the life insurance, health insurance, and employee benefits news that matters.

Top 8 Predictions That Will Disrupt Healthcare in 2020
Reenita Das, Contributor Healthcare / Forbes

Every year, our team of futurists, analysts, and consultants at Frost & Sullivan's Transformational Healthcare Group comes together to brainstorm and predict the themes, technologies, and global forces that will define the next 12 to 18 months for the healthcare industry. We also retrospect how we did each year, and each year we are becoming more accurate in the predictions we make. For the 2019 predictions that were released in November 2018, six out of eight predictions realized as anticipated, while the two remaining predictions have not panned out exactly the way we thought.

The top 8 predictions for 2020 are as follows:

Prediction #1: SDOH analytics platform gains traction during 2020
Prediction #2: AI develops more use cases and faces more ethical challenges, beginning with radiology
Prediction #3: Annuity-based model to catapult gene therapy commercialization
Prediction #4: Continued VC funding mega-rounds make 2020 a banner year for Digital Health Unicorns’ IPO exits
Prediction #5: Interoperability by pure-play solution vendors will gain ground against standalone systems
Prediction #6: Telehealth will gain mainstream adoption in the overall mix of healthcare services and will expand beyond the current focus on chronic conditions
Prediction #7: Precision medicine-led approaches will pave the way for next-gen health data analytics solutions
Prediction #8: 2020 will be a year of ‘Retailization’ for the healthcare industry, promoting the ‘Comparison Shopping’ consumer mindset

This article was written with contributions from Kamaljit Behera, Transformational Health, Senior Industry Analyst at Frost & Sullivan.

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Check out our speakers page for a full list of industry experts who will be joining us to share their knowledge and experiences in Laguna this spring.

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3 Employee Benefit Trends You Can Expect to See in 2020

The year 2020 could be a banner year of change for businesses, and not just because it’s a nice, round number. For one, millennials will make up more than half of all U.S. employees. Baby boomers will continue to exit the labor market just as rapidly as Gen Zers enter it, and about 4 in 10 workers, no matter their generation, will be freelancers. This workforce shift toward younger employees who want more flexibility is set to have a strong influence over 2020 employee benefit trends.

That’s why 2020 presents employers with a unique challenge: find benefits that save money while staying relevant for millennials and Gen Z. Striking this balance will likely become especially attractive to the new talent your business needs as we move into the next decade.

Future Trends in Employee Benefits: Healthier, Happier People

Trend 1: Work Site Wellness Clinics
Trend 2: Diverse Mental Health Services
Trend 3: Empowered Financial Wellness

5 Solutions for Single Parents Struggling With Student Loans
Elyssa Kirkham / Student Loan Hero

Single parents have to make ends meet with just one person’s income, time, support system and resources. Every fixed cost, from rent to student loan payments, can strain the budget.

If you’re a single parent with student loans (or managing parent student loans you took out for your child), it can feel like there’s no way to get ahead. However, single parents can solve the challenge of student debt with the capability, creativity and grit that they rely on every day.

Here are some ways single parents can tackle student loans — and create more breathing room in their budgets each month:

1. Refinance student loans
2. Explore your options for student loan forgiveness
3. Sign up for income-driven repayment
4. Defer or forbear student loans
5. Increase your income
6. Use public assistance

Nine years later, Americans evenly split on ObamaCare: Gallup

Americans are nearly evenly split on their views of the Affordable Care Act, according to a poll released nine years after the passage of one of former President Obama’s signature achievements.

Fifty percent of respondents in the Gallup poll out Wednesday said they approve of the Affordable Care Act, commonly referred to as ObamaCare, compared to 48 percent who disapprove of the health care law.

Pollsters found deep partisan divisions, with 84 percent of Democrats surveyed now approving of ObamaCare, compared to just 11 percent of Republicans. Eighty-seven percent of Republican respondents disapprove of it, as do 15 percent of Democrats.

Americans with a long-term illness or disease that health insurance companies deem a "preexisting condition” are more likely to approve of the Affordable Care Act than those who don’t suffer from such a condition, by a margin of 55 percent to 49 percent.

Daily on Healthcare, sponsored by SBEC: No time for ‘Obamacare 2.0’ in universal healthcare hearing?
by Kimberly Leonard & Cassidy Morrison / Washington Examiner

The date is finally on the books for the Energy and Commerce’s Health Subcommittee to hear the Medicare for All Act.

It’s set for Tuesday, Dec.10, but, just like the three other House hearings on “Medicare for all,” the idea won’t be the only one considered. The subcommittee will be discussing six other bills dealing with coverage expansion, largely through expanding who can buy into a government plan.

There’s one bill that’s notably absent from the list. We’ve been calling it “Obamacare 2.0,” (h/t Charles Gaba, author of ACASignups.net), because its actual name, the Protecting Pre-Existing Conditions and Making Healthcare More Affordable Act, doesn’t have the friendliest acronym. It’s also a bill that really does expand on Obamacare.

The legislation, a favorite of Democratic leaders and centrists, with 159 co-sponsors, funnels more money into Obamacare to boost coverage and lower the cost of premiums for customers, and it undoes actions by the Trump administration to sell plans outside of the law’s rules. It would let people in other income brackets get subsidies, likely bringing in customers who were previously priced out. According to the Commonwealth Fund, such actions could reduce the number of uninsured by roughly 5 million people. And that’s only if more states don’t expand Medicaid.

Key to employee retention: build your own benefit plans
By Kayla Webster / ebn

Customization is the key to building a benefits package that appeals to all ages, according to the CEO of a national benefits advisory firm.

Five generations are currently working side by side in the U.S. workforce, and that’s unlikely to change in coming years. The Bureau of Labor Statistics projects that a quarter of the workforce will be age 55 and up by the year 2028. Around 22% of the workforce will be between the ages of 25-34. With so much age diversity, employers will have to get creative if they want to appeal to their entire workforce.

“Employers who want to be competitive in a tight labor market have to stop using one-size-fits-all benefit packages,” says Elliot Dinkin, president and CEO of Cowden Associates, a Pittsburgh-based benefit adviser firm. “Different generations have different priorities and goals; the most competitive packages will reflect that.”

Advisor Uses Obamacare To Help Clients Retire Early

Their health-care search started with the state health-care exchange. During a planning session with Frazier, the couple found they were relatively close to qualifying as a couple for an Affordable Care Act subsidy. However, they could only do so if they earned less than 400% of the federal poverty income level, which is $65,840 in modified adjusted gross income for 2019.

Originally, the plan was to take $22,000 from the traditional IRA, but the advisor’s plan dropped that to $7,000, as income from the IRA would count towards the ACA limit. Instead, Frazier had the couple take the other $15,000 needed from their Roth IRA and from principal in their taxable account. ACA rules say funds from a Roth account do not count toward the ACA limit. This change brought them below the ACA $65,840 limit so they could qualify for a health insurance subsidy.

The drop in modified adjusted gross income qualified the couple for an almost $950 per month subsidy, or over 60% of the health insurance plan's monthly cost. It equated to more than $11,000 in annual premium savings. This subsidy fundamentally changed the annual expense calculation for the couple, requiring them to withdraw less on an annual basis from their accounts to cover their basic expenses.


Monday - 12-02-19 - - Mayor Pete’ Promotes a ‘Public Option’ 401(k)

Tuesday - 12-03-19 - - Why 100,000 People Never Got Student Loan Forgiveness

Wednesday - 12-04-19 - - Republican Sen. Chuck Grassley doubts Obamacare will be ruled unconstitutional: Report

Thursday - 12-05-19 - -Telehealth is Here to Stay: New 50 State Survey of Commercial Insurance Laws Reveals Progress

Friday - 11-22-19 - - Charles Schwab buying TD Ameritrade for $26B

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Walt Bernard Podgurski - - Editor