Group insurance is better, right?

Isn’t it always cheaper than buying an individual plan?

The answer is no, not always. Not in the Medicare world. Read the rest of this entry »

There are many layers to the federal Medicare program. Your employees will want you to help them figure out where to begin.

STEP 1: Break Down Medicare Into Manageable Pieces

Employees first need to know if they qualify for Medicare coverage, what coverage is available in their area, and how to get enrolled in a plan that fits their needs. Which means, the 3 most common questions an HR benefit administrator will be asked are:

  • When am I eligible?
  • What are the different parts of Medicare?
  • How do I enroll?

Click here for a simple summary page that provides the answers.

STEP 2: Provide Online Resources to Guide Them

The process of identifying the right Medicare plan and selecting the best policy is equally confusing. Employees find it easier to utilize an online search tool that can take their personal information and provide them with the best options. The following tools can assist them:

By Joseph Stutzman

You have no doubt received all kinds of offers in the mail for supplemental insurance. Most people associate supplemental insurance with Medicare and the need to cover what Medicare won’t but there are all forms of supplemental insurance: Read the rest of this entry »

By Taimur Qazi

The financial impact of Health Reform on medical professionals across the country is difficult to predict. Physicians derive their income in different ways with many being independent practitioners and others working as employees of large physician groups and hospital systems. Read the rest of this entry »

SHRM Online has just published this “viewpoint” piece written by our own CEO and President, Bryce Williams. Bryce explains why the success of the independent Medicare insurance exchange shows the way to more choice, personalization, and competition in the insurance market of the future. Bryce asks:

“So, why should employers care about exchanges now? There are two important reasons:

Exchanges for individuals point to a future where employers can offer their employees more choices in health plans.

Exchanges can provide a way for employers to meet their health care obligations to employees while managing costs.”

We just put out a press release on the most recent survey of our 4500+ member retiree panel. 1472 people responded and here’s what they said:

How confident are you that Medicare will be available for the rest of your life? Your childrens’ lives?

Confidence level             Self             Children
Very confident             16%             4%
Somewhat confident             43%             16%
Unsure             9%             17%
Not confident             32%             62%
Don’t know                         1%     

About 60% of them are confident that Medicare will be around for the rest of their lives – but only 20% are confident that it will be around for the rest of their children’s lives. You can read the whole release here.

Just published: this concise summary of the most important provisions, with short comments by real experts in the field. Recommended reading.

It looks like a number of factors are conspiring to keep older people in the workforce longer, and that may be a very good thing for the economy. As a result of the current recession, Baby Boomers are already planning to retire later, or not at all. Over the next ten years, jobs growth will outpace the number of younger people available to fill them by as many as 5.7 million jobs. That means more employers will need to retain and/or hire older workers, and more older workers will continue to pay into Social Security and Medicare. Chris Farrell in BusinessWeek makes the case for an optimistic outlook.