September 2017

In This Issue
Staffing Changes
Exclusive Webinar--Worker Misclassification: Are You At Risk?
Mission Health and BCBSNC
PrimeMail Prescriptions Move to Walgreens Mail Service
Ask Rachel
Practice Wellness Introduction Video
Decisions, Decisions: Why is Choosing So Hard?

Staffing Changes

As announced in the June issue, George Fanelli retired June 30th after 18 years of service to the NCMS Plan and participating practices.

Since that announcement, we had been busy searching for his replacement. I am pleased to announce that Rachel Eaton has been promoted to fill George’s position. Rachel has been the NCMS Plan’s Operations Associate for the last five years working with practices primarily on the renewal process. Rachel’s familiarity with the NCMS Plan and with many of you has resulted in a smooth transition.

Rachel will answer the same number you have dialed in the past to reach George, (919) 878-7561. She can be reached by email at

Additionally, I am pleased to announce that we have also hired Rachel’s replacement. Zack Gentry joined the NCMS Plan team as our new Operations Associate on July 24th. Zack joined the team in Raleigh, relocating from Greensboro where he worked with Lincoln Financial Group. He brings a positive customer service attitude and great energy to the NCMS Plan. You will enjoy working with him if you have the opportunity. Zack can be reached at (919) 878-7569 or

We look forward to continuing to serve you and your practice.


Exclusive Webinar--Worker Misclassification: Are You At Risk?

Please join us for an NCMS Plan Employment Law Webinar:

Worker Misclassification – Could You Be At Risk?

Thursday, October 5th
11:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.

Despite much uncertainty in our nation’s capital, one thing appears certain – the focus on how employers classify their workers continues to strengthen. Misclassification of employees as 1099 contractors is near the top of the priority list for many states’ AG offices, and it was highlighted by the EEOC earlier this year as a priority in its Strategic Enforcement Plan for 2017 – 2021. Misclassification of employees for overtime purposes remains on the DOL’s radar, even after changes to the FLSA overtime rules failed to take effect earlier this year.

In this age where outsourcing jobs and flexible work arrangements have become the norm, are you correctly classifying your workers as employees versus independent contractors? exempt versus non-exempt?

Our experts will discuss recent worker classification trends under North Carolina and federal laws, how these trends may affect your payroll, benefits, wage and overtime, and legal obligations, and practices you should have in place to protect your business.

Presented by:

Ann Murray, Partner & Candace Friel, Partner
Nelson Mullins Riley & Scarborough LLP

Click Here to Register!


Mission Health and BCBSNC

We are very aware of and concerned by the current situation between Mission Health and BCBSNC. At this point, what we know is that Mission Health is leaving the BCBSNC network October 5 and BCBSNC is planning for how to redirect members to alternative facilities and providers for in-network care. Here is a link to the BCBSNC updates and Mission’s messaging as well. We hope that both parties will continue discussions and reach an agreement, but it is likely that this will not happen prior to October 5. Over the years, we have seen these negotiations and contract terminations occur very publicly with other health systems. Moses Cone, Park Ridge, Wayne Memorial, and Carteret Health Care all were in similar situations at one time, but ultimately resolved with an agreement reached. BCBSNC is aware that the NCMS Plan has over 50 practices and nearly 1,500 covered employees who would be impacted.

If BCBSNC and Mission do not reach an agreement, then the information provided by BCBSNC regarding alternatives for in-network care will apply to NCMS Plan members. If members receive care from Mission Health as an out-of-network benefit, the expense would be significant. Services rendered by Mission Health to NCMS Plan members after October 4 will be processed as out-of-network claims. In an emergency, members should always go to the nearest hospital. Emergency care is covered as an in-network benefit. Members already in a treatment plan for certain conditions with Mission Health will receive a letter from BCBS if they qualify for continuity of care and in-network treatment at Mission.


PrimeMail Prescriptions Move to Walgreens Mail Service

Starting September 30, PrimeMail mail order prescriptions will be filled by Walgreens Mail Service. Members can expect the same great service and convenience. Members will not need to do anything until they are ready for their next fill. Prescriptions can be filled online at or by calling the number on their prescription label. After September 30, providers will send mail order prescriptions to Walgreens Mail Service electronically.

Impacted members have received two mailers communicating this change, one in late-August and one earlier this month. Active mail order prescriptions at PrimeMail will automatically be on file with Walgreens. If prescriptions require a prior authorization (PA), as long as Walgreens has a current PA on file, members will not need a new PA until the renewal date.

If members want to receive mail order prescriptions, they should ask their doctor to send their prescription electronically to Walgreens Mail Service. A 90 day supply of long-term medicines should be requested. New prescriptions can be received in ten business days. If members need to start their drug right away, they can request a 14 day supply to fill at a local retail pharmacy.


Ask Rachel

Question: Rachel, Our practice currently has a 90 day probationary period for employees and we would like to change it to 60 days. How do we go about changing it?

Answer: Your practice can change the probationary period at the first of the month going forward. To make this change we need a letter on your practice’s letterhead informing us of this change. This change will be for all employees that are hired on or after the effective date of the change, again, the first of the following month. For example, if your change was effective October 1st, any employees hired on or after October 1 would be subject to the 60 day probationary period with their insurance becoming effective on the 1st of month following 60 days. For an employee hired on September 1st, they would still be subject to a 90 day probationary period.

The NCMS Plan offers four probationary periods.

0 True: No probationary period, employees are eligible for insurance on their date of hire.

30 Days: Employees are eligible for insurance the 1st of the month after 30 days are completed (e.g. an employee hired on October 1st would be eligible for insurance on November 1st. Their 30 days would be completed on October 30th but insurance would take effect November 1st)

60 Days: Employees are eligible for insurance the 1st of the month after 60 days are completed (e.g. an employee hired on October 1st would be eligible for insurance on December 1st. Their 60 days would be completed on November 29th but insurance would take effect December 1st)

90 True: Employees are eligible for insurance after completing a 90 day probationary period (e.g. an employee hired on October 1st would be eligible for insurance on December 30th. Their 90 days would be completed on December 29th and their insurance would take effect on the 91st day)

If you have questions about probationary periods or any other topic, please email me at


Practice Wellness Introduction Video

The NCMS Plan is committed to helping you, our Practice Administrators, fulfill a vision of wellness centering on overall well-being by creating healthier cultures. Ultimately, this culture allows our members to thrive and empowers them to maintain, improve and manage their health. We offer a variety of programs designed to help your employees in the areas of weight management, tobacco cessation, nutrition, stress management and work life balance.

Watch this video to learn more about how Jason Horay, Health Promotion Program Manager, can work with you and the services we can deliver to you and your staff. Connect with Jason at to discuss Practice Wellness and how we can work together to create a healthier future for your employees and your practice.


Decisions, Decisions: Why is Choosing So Hard?

Life comes down to a series of choices, from the mundane to the momentous. By analyzing your options and choosing wisely, you can boost your well-being and success. Some choices—such as deciding to move in with your partner, go back to school, or make a big purchase—are particularly consequential.
Practice Wellness Personal is available to support you and your enrolled employees through all these stages.

Members can visit and enter their invitation code. The code is made up of ‘PWP-’ followed by their subscriber ID on their health insurance ID card. Once logged in, click on the “Life” tab, then on “Employee Assistance” and see the “Making Decisions” feature on the home page to learn a few things to consider when making important decisions.

Support is also available 24/7/365 by calling (800) 248-6615. Registration is not required for members to receive personal consultation with trained counselors on issues of health, family, money and work.

Questions about Practice Wellness Personal? Please contact Jason Horay at


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 physicians.

For more information about many other benefits of NCMS membership, visit