Obama signs Medicare bill changing how doctors get paid

April 16, 2015

For LA Times story by Noam M. Leavy see http://www.latimes.com/nation/la-na-medicare-doctors-pay-20150415-story.html Instead of annually ignoring a reimbursement system that by this year threatened to cut physician fees by more than 20%, lawmakers finally put a new payment system in place that gives physicians an annual 0.5% increase over the next four years. In 2019 performance-based financial incentives begin for physicians, rewarding doctors […]

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Long-term Care Policies Sold Decades Ago Are Becoming Costlier

April 10, 2015

The LA Times reported on March 27, “‘Insurers that sell these products lose money on them,’ says Vincent Lui, a life-insurance analyst at Morningstar. ‘So they’re raising prices and also trying to get out of the business right and left.’ Four of the five largest providers — including Manulife and MetLife — have either scaled back their […]

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Patient Advocacy Takes Off

April 10, 2015

The LA Times reported on April 6, “These patient advocates — also called medical billing advocates or claims assistance professionals — have been around for decades. But the field has taken off in recent years as patients face higher out-of-pocket medical costs and the healthcare system becomes increasingly difficult for the average person to navigate. ‘People […]

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Kaiser fined $28 million for failing to provide timely MRI

March 26, 2015

See LA Times story here: http://www.latimes.com/business/la-fi-jury-awards-kaiser-cancer-patient-20150326-story.html By the time Kaiser finally approved an MRI for 23 year old Anna Rahm, a cancerous tumor grew so large that doctors amputated her leg, half of her pelvis and part of her spine. Kaiser has also recently been fined millions for failure to provide mental health benefits in a […]

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2016 open enrollment period announced by HHS

February 25, 2015

On February 20, the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) issued final regulations on the 2016 Notice of Benefit and Payment Parameters. The regulations address a variety of Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA) benefit provisions for 2016 affecting both the group and individual markets. While HHS clarified a few items from the […]

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How to set up a Security Freeze on your credit report

February 7, 2015

If you are very concerned about becoming a victim of fraud or identity theft, a Security Freeze (also known as a Credit Freeze) might be right for you. Placing a freeze on your credit report will prevent lenders and others from accessing your credit report entirely, which will prevent them from extending credit. With a […]

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Scam email campaigns targeting Anthem members in wake of cyber attack

February 6, 2015

Members who may have been impacted by the cyber attack against Anthem should be aware of scam email campaigns targeting current and former members.  These scams, designed to capture personal information (known as “phishing”) are designed to appear as if they are from a health plan and the emails include a “click here” link for credit monitoring. […]

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Cyber Attack Impacting Anthem Members

February 5, 2015

I want to let you know that we have just become aware that Anthem, Inc., the parent company of Anthem Blue Cross, is the victim of a highly-sophisticated cyber attack. Anthem has informed us that its member data was accessed, and information about our clients could be among the data. We are working closely with […]

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5 tips to prepare for last-minute ACA enrollments

February 4, 2015

With less than two weeks until the end of the Affordable Care Act’s Feb. 15 open enrollment period, Artist Insurance Services offers these five tips to help prepare for purchasing health insurance. 1. Do a full assessment of your current health care needs. Being able to assess what is important to you and your families […]

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Blue Shield signs agreement with Cedars-Sinai

February 4, 2015

Effective March 1, 2015, Blue Shield of California has signed a new agreement with Cedars-Sinai Medical Center for Individual and Family Plan PPO plans. This includes on- and off-exchange Platinum, Gold, Silver, and Bronze plans. With this agreement, Blue Shield’s IFP PPO members will also have access to Cedars-Sinai Medical Group and Cedars-Sinai Health Associates. […]

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