New Health Promotion Coordinator Adds Value to NCMS Plan
In North Carolina, the annual cost of unhealthy nutrition, obesity,
physical inactivity and tobacco use is approximately $4,768 per employee.
The impact of unhealthy lifestyles is reflected in the NCMS Plan's cost of
providing benefits and these costs continue to escalate.
to begin to control these expenses, through health promotion, is now! As
research has shown, effective health promotion programs lead to better
lifestyle choices, which in turn lead to a healthier population. In fact,
a recent survey of 255 large employers in the U.S. found that employers
with highly effective health and productivity management programs have
cost increases that are:
5 times lower for sick leave;
lower for long-term disability;
4 times lower for short-term
3 times lower for general health care coverage.
The NCMS Plan is committed to health promotion and to helping you
realize the benefits of an effective health promotion program.
are pleased to announce that Jason Horay, MS, ATC, LAT, CHES, will serve
as the NCMS Plan's Health Promotion Coordinator. Jason holds a B.S. in
Sports Medicine, M.S. in Health Promotion and has over 10 years of
experience in worksite wellness, most recently in a program management
role at Duke University.
Jason states, "I look forward to
partnering with practices to assess their worksite health promotion needs,
to review and interpret NCMS Plan utilization data to target the most
cost-productive areas, and to create a program action plan that will
empower employees to maintain, improve and manage their health."
The NCMS Plan is excited to offer this consultative approach which
partners with practices to identify specific short-term actions they can
take to impact claim costs and put in place an effective program to help
control claim costs over the long-term. This service is a value-added
offering to your practice at no additional charge.
can start to create a healthier future. The sooner you begin a workplace
wellness initiative, the faster you can realize both the financial and
health rewards. If your practice is interested in promoting health among
your employees and creating a culture of health, please contact Jason at
Promotion or 919-878-7530.
Health Reform Creates Small Business Tax Credit
Many small businesses that provide health insurance coverage to their
employees now qualify for a special tax credit (up to 35 percent), due to
recent health care reform legislation. The credit, provided under the
Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act and available for the 2010 tax
year, is designed to encourage small employers with fewer than 25
full-time equivalent employees to offer health insurance coverage for the
first time or maintain coverage they already have.
participating practices can go to www.bcbsnc.com/taxcredit for
more information. On the website is a tax credit calculator that you can
use to determine if your practice is eligible for the tax credit and what
the tax credit might be. More information and details can be found on the
IRS website (http://www.irs.gov/newsroom/article/0,,id=223666,00.html).
If you have questions regarding the small business tax credit and whether
you qualify, contact your tax advisor.
Health Benefit Booklets Available Online
In order to reduce administrative costs and paper consumption, health
benefit booklets will no longer be printed and mailed to members beginning
August 1, 2010. Benefit booklets will be available to members online
through Member Services, www.bcbsnc.com/members/ncms.
Members are strongly encouraged to register for Member Services so they
can access the health benefit booklet, as well as other online plan
features and wellness programs like BluePoints and Member Health
Partnerships. If you would like an electronic copy of a health benefit
booklet for your practice, call us at 800-662-7917.
Question: George, our NCMS Plan health plan renews in August and two
of our employees are considering enrolling on their spouse's employer's
group health plan. We have six eligible employees total and currently all
six are enrolled. Will their change jeopardize our ability to continue to
participate in the NCMS Plan?
Answer: The NCMS Plan's
requirement is that at least 75% of eligible employees be enrolled. In the
count of eligible employees in your group there can be employees that are
"eligible waivers" and therefore do not count against your practice for
the participation calculation. The Plan considers an eligible waiver as
being an eligible employee who elects coverage under a spouse's group
health plan or an eligible employee who is covered by a
government-sponsored health plan such as Tricare or Medicare.
Based on the information you have presented regarding the two
employees electing their spouse's group coverage, they are eligible
waivers and your group remains compliant with NCMS eligibility.
You have 6 eligible employees. Subtract the 2
employees with eligible waivers (i.e. other group health coverage) and you
are left with 4 employees, all of which are enrolled in the NCMS Plan.
This is 100% participation.
If you have questions about your
practice's compliance with NCMS Plan participation requirements, please
contact me at 919-878-7561 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
NCMS Plan Dental: Eligible Dependent Coverage to Age 26
Effective August 1, 2010, eligible dependents can remain on NCMS Plan
Dental (underwritten by MetLife) until age 26 regardless of student
status. This amendment to our dental policy will now match the NCMS Plan
Health eligibility provision. NCMS Plan Dental policies renew August 1st
for all practices, regardless of group health effective dates. Rates will
not change August 1, 2010 as the NCMS Plan enters the second year of a
two-year rate guarantee.
If your practice is interested in NCMS
Plan Dental, please contact us at 800-662-7917 or mailto:email@example.com?subject=NCMS
About the North Carolina Medical Society
As the largest physician organization in the state, the North Carolina
Medical Society (NCMS) is devoted to representing the interests of
physicians and protecting the quality of patient care. The NCMS Plan,
sponsored by the NCMS, is the only statewide employee benefits plan
designed specifically for North Carolina physicians.
information about many other benefits of NCMS membership, visit http://www.ncmedsoc.org/.