Ask the Experts: Pate Steele, Robert Cirkiel and Todd McDonald Discuss Health Care Reform and What it Means For Your Business
On May 4, 2010, Grahall hosted a webinar on the new heath care reform bills signed into law in March 2010. Presenters Pate Steele of Grahall, Robert Cirkiel of UHY Advisors and Todd McDonald of Aisling Partners reviewed the main provisions of the reform, discussed the timeline of events and actions required, and shared information and tools needed to respond to health care reform.
As Robert Cirkiel said pertaining to the Health Care Reform bill, “What you like about the Massachusetts plan you will like about the Federal plan, what you don’t like about the Massachusetts plan you won’t like about the Federal plan”. Essentially, Massachusetts provides a barometer to gauge the Federal plan’s impact on challenges and opportunities that will face every state in the coming years.
Key issues to look for 2010 and 2011 include:
• Changes in dependent status
• Small employer tax credits
• Reinsurance program
• Grandfathered plans affected by some provisions and not others
• Fall 2010 communications for 2011 open enrollment
• Proceeding with caution to avoid losing your grandfathered status
Todd McDonald shared that, yes, Massachusetts did insure the uninsured and now boasts the highest coverage rate in the country up from 83% to over 97%, but the goal of reducing heath care costs was not achieved. Healthcare costs for Massachusetts have increased 68% from $1 billion in 2006 to an estimated $1.7 billion in 2010.
There were important lessons learned from the Massachusetts reform including:
• Merger of non-group and group – Increases cost
• Employer mandate – Socially responsible, not necessary
• Minimum creditable coverage – Full disclosure is the issue
• Administrative responsibilities – Keep it simple
Complete recording of the conference call, all presentation materials, and other information are available for download on the Grahall website. To listen to the session and access the presentation materials, go to http://www.grahall.com/knowledge/event-transcripts/. The conference content begins about 6 ½ minutes into the recording.
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