|In This Issue|
||HSA Administration Change|
||Survey: Percent of Employers Offering Health
||NCMS Plan Sponsors "Wake Up Walk" at Upcoming NCMS
||Workplace Wellness & Health Care Reform|
HSA Administration Change
Blue Cross and Blue Shield of North Carolina (BCBSNC) has selected
HealthEquity (HEQ) as their preferred Health Savings Account (HSA)
administrator. HEQ is the nation's oldest, largest and fastest growing HSA
administrator. HEQ replaces BenefitWallet (BW) and will offer a better
employer and member experience with easier enrollment, easier online
management, improved reporting, and anytime/anywhere access.
transition to HEQ will begin with renewals on or after 11/1/14. The
transition will impact NCMS Plan practices renewing 11/1/14 and then at
each monthly renewal thereafter through 10/1/15. Practices that recently
renewed 8/1/14 or 9/1/14, and renewing 10/1/14 will not be impacted now
and will remain with BenefitWallet (BW) through their next renewal. A
practice can choose to stay with BW after their transition date, but will
automatically transition to HEQ if they do not indicate otherwise. This
transition only impacts NCMS Plan practices currently using BW as their
HSA administrator through BCBSNC.
Leading up to your practice's
transition date, BCBSNC will send eligibility files to HEQ with member
information and initiate the communication process with employees about
their accounts and services. Members will receive a welcome kit with a
debit card within 10 days of account activation. Practice contacts will
also receive an employer welcome kit from HEQ with more information about
how to fund employee accounts and the benefits of HEQ administration.
Since this process cannot begin until you submit your NCMS Plan renewal
paperwork, early submission is important to provide sufficient time for
new HSA setup.
Existing individual member BW HSAs will not
transfer automatically to HEQ. Members will need to act independently to
either transfer their existing account balance or simply continue to spend
down their BW account until the balance is exhausted, but will be
responsible for any monthly service fees. Accountholders will receive
information on how to transfer balances if they choose to do so.
BCBSNC will send eligibility files only to HEQ after a practice's
transition date, so BW will no longer receive any newly eligible
information for account set up purposes after that time. Practices that
elect to stay with BW will have to manage the new account setup process on
their own working with BW.
Please let your NCMS Plan agent know if
you have questions, or call our office at (800) 662-7917. Even though this
transition may be months away for most of you, we want to ensure that the
transition is a smooth one for you and your employees.
Survey: Percent of Employers Offering Health Benefits Unchanged
The 2014 Employer Health Benefits Survey conducted by the Kaiser Family
Foundation provides a detailed look at trends in employer-sponsored health
coverage. The 2014 survey included almost three thousand interviews with
public and private employers. Key findings from the survey, conducted from
January through May 2014, were released earlier this month.
the more noteworthy trends, the percentage of employers (55%) which offer
health benefits to at least some of their employees and the percentage of
workers covered at those employers (62%) are statistically unchanged from
2013. The considerable stability in the health benefits market may come as
a surprise given the ongoing debate about the impact of the ACA. Bigger
changes may be on the horizon in 2015 as the employer
shared-responsibility provision takes effect for large employers (more
than 100 full time equivalent employees), but the NCMS Plan will continue
to provide health benefits to hundreds of practices across the state.
To review the Kaiser Family Foundation survey, visit http://kaiserfamilyfoundation.files.wordpress.com/2014/09/8626-employer-health-benefits-2014-summary-of-findings1.pdf.
If you have questions about the NCMS Plan and the ACA, contact your NCMS
Plan agent of our office at (800) 662-7917.
Question: George, our practice offers a high deductible health plan
(HDHP) and I have a question about the deductible. One of our employees
with family coverage recently got divorced and the spouse has elected
COBRA. They met their family deductible prior to the divorce. How is the
deductible handled in this situation?
Answer: The HDHP family
deductible is an aggregate of amounts contributed by all covered persons.
In this situation, where the divorced spouse elects COBRA, the spouse
becomes enrolled separately under their own identification number. Any
deductible amount accumulated specifically by that spouse is credited to
them under their new identification number. The total amount credited to
the family aggregate deductible remains with the employee and the spouse
on COBRA (now shown as "employee only") must meet whatever outstanding
balance remains of their individual deductible.
your group renewal, the deductible accumulation for both would be reset
and both the employee and the spouse on COBRA would have a new benefit
period deductible to meet.
If you have questions about deductibles
and HDHPs, contact me directly with an inquiry at (919) 878-7561 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
NCMS Plan Sponsors "Wake Up Walk" at Upcoming NCMS Annual Meeting
Are you or your physicians attending the North Carolina Medical Society
Annual Meeting in October?
If so, plan to participate in the "Wake
Up Walk" sponsored by the NCMS Plan on Saturday morning, October 25th.
Start your morning off right by taking part in the wellness walk to
promote healthy behavior and lead by example! Each participant will be
entered in a raffle to win a Fitbit Flex wireless wristband, receive a
resistance band and a heart-healthy breakfast.
Jason Horay, Health
Promotion Coordinator for the NCMS Plan, will lead the 1.8 mile (about 30
minutes) walk through the grounds of the Grandover Resort. The walk will
begin promptly at 7:15 a.m. from the Colony Terrace of the Grandover
Resort. Not to worry, you will have plenty of time to prepare for the
first event of the day. No pre-registration is required for this event.
Just show up and be ready for a brisk start to your day.
information about the NCMS Annual Meeting from October visit http://www.ncmedsoc.org/news-publications/ncms-annual-meeting/.
Workplace Wellness & Health Care Reform
Do you know how the Affordable Care Act impacts workplace wellness
programs? Are you confident that your practice's wellness program is
Jason Horay is a valuable resource to help you
understand the ACA's wellness provisions and whether your program meets
the guidelines. Jason has put together a handy infographic that summarizes
these issues. You can find it on our website at http://www.ncmsplan.com/practice-wellness/.
learn more about the ACA and wellness programs, contact Jason Horay at
(919) 878-7530 or email@example.com.
About the North Carolina Medical Society
Established in 1849, the North Carolina Medical Society (NCMS) is
devoted to representing the interests of physicians and protecting the
quality of patient care as the largest physician organization in the
state. The NCMS Plan, sponsored by the NCMS, is the only statewide
employee benefits plan designed specifically for North Carolina
For more information about many other benefits of NCMS
membership, visit http://www.ncmedsoc.org/.