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Archives for: June 2013

06/28/13

  04:31:56 pm, by MedBen5   , 241 words,  
Categories: News, Health Plan Management

DOMA Ruling Changes Health Care Reform Landscape

The decision by the Supreme Court earlier this week to strike down the Defense of Marriage Act changes how health care benefits will be handled for same-sex couples under the Affordable Care Act, writes Matthew Sturdevant: “A person in a same-sex… more »
  03:07:56 pm, by MedBen5   , 182 words,  
Categories: News, Wellness

Study: Heart Failure Linked to Greater Cancer Risk

Potential evidence that one type of chronic condition raises the risk of other illnesses: People with heart failure are more likely to be diagnosed with cancer, a new study suggests. Reuters Health reports that the study matched newly diagnosed heart… more »
  12:28:10 pm, by MedBen5   , 199 words,  
Categories: Announcements, News, Prescription

FDA Shuts Down More Illegal Online Pharmacies

The Food and Drug Adminstration is continuing to take action against online pharmacies that sell illegal drugs. Following last year’s shutdown of 18,000 shady websites, the agency announced that another 1,600 sites are out of business. CNN… more »

06/27/13

  04:35:40 pm, by MedBen5   , 234 words,  
Categories: News, Wellness

Keep Sick Leave And Personal Time Separate, Doctor Recommends

Micheal Edmond, a professor of internal medicine VCU Medical Center, offers his professional perspective on the problem of “presenteeism", or coming to work while under the weather: “While most humans inherently know that it’s not a good… more »
  04:20:15 pm, by MedBen5   , 222 words,  
Categories: News, Wellness

Demand For Primary Care Expected To Further Exceed Supply

An aging and more chronically ill population, plus the lure of more lucrative specialty practives, has created a shortage of primary care physicians in the U.S. – and the forthcoming addition of millions of newly insured individuals promises to… more »
  03:21:40 pm, by MedBen5   , 196 words,  
Categories: News, Wellness

Smoking Raises Risk Of Post-Surgery Complications

A new study suggests that cigarettes and surgery don’t mix – and simply quitting a couple months before a medical procedure won’t help, Reuters Health reports. Based on a post-surgery review of current smokers, former smokers who had quit at least a… more »

06/26/13

  04:54:32 pm, by MedBen5   , 216 words,  
Categories: News, Wellness, Health Plan Management

Hospital Mortality Rates For Certain Conditions Good Gauge Of Overall Performance

If your hospital of choice has a good track record for treating heart attack, pneumonia and congestive heart patients, chances are it also performs well for patients with other conditions – and these three mortality measures may be enough to… more »
  04:35:58 pm, by MedBen5   , 249 words,  
Categories: News, Wellness

Monitoring Early Prostate Cancer More Effective Than Surgery, Study Finds (UPDATED)

Monitoring early stage prostate cancer is more effective and economical than performing surgery and radiation from the start, a new study finds. “Most of the men who are diagnosed in this country these days have low-risk prostate cancer,” said study… more »

06/25/13

  05:21:42 pm, by MedBen5   , 281 words,  
Categories: News, Prescription

Supreme Court Rules Generic Drugmakers Not Liable For Design

The generic drug industry scored a major win yesterday, when the Supreme Court ruled that patients who claim to be injured by generics cannot sue the makers for the design of their drugs. According to The New York Times, the 5-to-4 decision overturned… more »
  05:00:07 pm, by MedBen5   , 206 words,  
Categories: News, Wellness

Parents Should Promote Better Health Habits To Kids, Study Finds

With childhood obesity more than tripling in American adolescents over the past 30 years, the need for parents to step in and take action has never been greater. But a new study suggests that rather than dwelling on their kid’s extra pounds, mom… more »
  12:16:48 pm, by MedBen5   , 298 words,  
Categories: News, Health Plan Management

MedBen University Details Reform's "Pay or Play" Concept

School may be out for the summer, but MedBen University remains in session! Our team of experts is traveling the Midwest to share its knowledge of health care benefits with employers of all sizes. At an MBU on June 25 in Lima, Ohio, MedBen Vice… more »

06/24/13

  05:19:29 pm, by MedBen5   , 270 words,  
Categories: News, Wellness, Health Plan Management

Calling Obesity A "Disease" Sends Wrong Message, Doctor Argues

David Katz, MD, Director of Yale University’s Prevention Research Center, says that the American Medical Association made a mistake in recognizing obesity as a disease: “The notion that obesity is a disease will inevitably invite a reliance on… more »
  05:04:47 pm, by MedBen5   , 206 words,  
Categories: News, Wellness, Health Plan Management

Health Care? Americans Want An App For That

With over half of American adults relying on smartphones for everything from mapping trips to buying groceries, it should come as no surprise that many want to use their devices to make health care simpler. HealthDay News reports that many Americans… more »

06/21/13

  05:03:51 pm, by MedBen5   , 214 words,  
Categories: News, Health Plan Management

MedBen 's Claims Accuracy Far Exceeds The National Average

The national average of claims incorrectly processed by heath plans dropped to 7.1% in 2013, according to a new National Health Insurer Report Card released by the American Medical Association (AMA). It contines a trend of falling inaccuracy rates, from… more »
  04:12:57 pm, by MedBen5   , 203 words,  
Categories: Announcements

Colonoscopies Can Save Lives, Study Finds

A new study supports the importance of colon cancer screenings, HealthDay News reports. Researchers found that patients whose cancer was detected by a colonoscopy tended to be in an earlier stage at the time of diagnosis, and therefore had a better… more »
  01:27:04 pm, by MedBen5   , 196 words,  
Categories: News, Wellness

FDA Approves Expanded Availability Of Emergency Contraceptive

Following a statement by the Justice Department earlier this month that it would not appeal a federal judge’s order to allow girls of any age to buy Plan B One-Step without prescriptions, the Food and Drug Adminstration has approved expanded… more »

06/20/13

  05:14:59 pm, by MedBen5   , 250 words,  
Categories: News, Health Plan Management

Many Unnecessary Surgeries Performed Every Year

Every year thousands of patients undergo surgery they don’t need, according to the findings of a USA Today investigation. In some specialities, unnecessary surgeries might account for 10% to 20% of all operations. Six of the most common… more »
  04:25:22 pm, by MedBen5   , 194 words,  
Categories: News, Prescription

Nearly 70% Of Americans Take A Prescription Drug

If you don’t take a prescription drug, chances are you know one or two people who do… or three, or four, or more, Drug Store News reports. According to a new study by the Mayo Clinich, nearly 70% of Americans use at least one prescription… more »
  04:00:07 pm, by MedBen5   , 183 words,  
Categories: News, Health Plan Management

Proposed Bill Would Increase Hours Under Employer Mandate

According to The Hill’s Healthwatch blog, legislation has been introduced in the Senate to modify the employer mandate in the Affordable Care Act. The mandate, which will take effect in 2014, requires businesses to offer health insurance to their… more »

06/19/13

  05:04:10 pm, by MedBen5   , 200 words,  
Categories: News, Prescription

Avoidable Rx Costs Add Up To $200 Billion Last Year

Smarter use of prescription medications could have saved Americans $200 billion in 2012, according to a new study from the IMS Institute for Healthcare Informatics. These “avoidable costs", as the study calls them, lead to millions of unnecessary… more »
  04:16:24 pm, by MedBen5   , 215 words,  
Categories: News, Wellness

Less Than 1 In 5 Americans Now Smoke, Study Finds

A recent government study conducted by the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) has found that the proportion of U.S. adult smoking has dropped to 18% within the last two years, the Associated Press reports. Overall smoking rates have fallen over the past… more »
  04:03:35 pm, by MedBen5   , 182 words,  
Categories: News, Health Plan Management

GAO: Government In Danger Of Missing Exchange Deadline

The federal government could miss the October 1 deadline to enroll in health insurance exchanges, a report by the non-partisan Government Accountability Office (GAO) released today said. According to Reuters, the report noted that the key parts of the… more »

06/18/13

  12:56:49 pm, by MedBen5   , 228 words,  
Categories: News, Health Plan Management

Slow Health Care Cost Growth In 2014, Report Says

Health care costs will see slow growth next year, according to a new report by the accounting and consulting firm PwC. The Associated Press reports that the recend trend of lower cost increases will continue, in spite of an improving economy and the… more »
  10:11:09 am, by MedBen5   , 196 words,  
Categories: News, Prescription

Court Ruling Give FTC Greater Scrutiny Over "Pay-for-Delay" Deals

In a 5-3 ruling, the Supreme Court ruled yesterday that the Federal Trade Commission can give additional scrutiny to so-called “pay-for-delay” arrangements between generic and brand-name drug companies, The New York Times reports. Justice… more »

06/17/13

  05:03:19 pm, by MedBen5   , 231 words,  
Categories: News, Health Plan Management

Best Medical Outcomes At A Lower Cost? MedBen Has The Solution

In order to hold down health care plan costs, employers are considering new approaches to promoting plan member use of providers with the best medical outcomes, Business Insurance reports. According to an Aon Hewitt survey of about 800 large and… more »
  03:45:17 pm, by MedBen5   , 273 words,  
Categories: News, Wellness, Health Plan Management

AMA Recognizes Obesity As A Disease (UPDATED)

With two-thirds of US adults defined as overweight or obese, The American Medical Association is considering whether to recognize obesity as a disease, Forbes reports. The potential classification has already created debate. “More widespread… more »
  10:32:44 am, by MedBen5   , 189 words,  
Categories: News, Health Plan Management

More Employers Expect Higher Costs Under Reform Law

Employers aren’t overly optomistic that the Affordable Care Act will help their bottom line, finds a new survey by benefits consultant Mercer. According to The Wall Street Journal, just 9% of the 881companies surveyed feel the health care reform… more »

06/14/13

  05:33:55 pm, by MedBen5   , 240 words,  
Categories: News, Wellness, Health Plan Management

Oncology Care Management Promotes Effective Cancer Treatment

A recent Reuters article notes that at the annual meeting of the American Society of Clinical Oncology earlier this month, doctors “heard groundbreaking data on a new class of immune system boosters” that shrank tumors in patients with… more »
  04:39:29 pm, by MedBen5   , 199 words,  
Categories: Announcements

Thran Joins MedBen Sales & Marketing As Project Coordinator

The MedBen Sales & Marketing Department is pleased to announce the recent addition of Kelly Thran to its team. A seasoned veteran of the benefits management company, Thran will serve as the department’s Marketing Project Coordinator. In her… more »
  04:26:48 pm, by MedBen5   , 272 words,  
Categories: Health Plan Management

Marketplace Creates Hospital Cost Differences, Says AHA

The fact that surgical costs differ from one hospital to another may not come a total surprise. But the recent introduction of a Medicare Provider Charge database by Health and Human Services, containing prices charged by more than 3,000 hospitals, has… more »

06/13/13

  05:33:23 pm, by MedBen5   , 215 words,  
Categories: News, Wellness

Worksite Wellness Factors Into Employment Decisions, Survey Finds

Prospective employee consider a company’s apporach to health and wellness when making a job decisions, a new survey reveals. According to Small Biz Advisor, the survey of approximately 1,300 businesses and 10,000 employees found that 87% claim… more »
  04:59:56 pm, by MedBen5   , 200 words,  
Categories: News, Health Plan Management

Individual Health Plan Premiums Will Nearly Double, Says Ohio Dept. Of Insurance

Avik Roy warns Ohioans covered under individual health plans to prepare for some serious sticker shock next year: “Democrats continue to try to dismiss the evidence that Obamacare will dramatically increase the cost of insurance for people who buy it… more »
  04:40:20 pm, by MedBen5   , 248 words,  
Categories: News, Prescription, Wellness

Birth Control Pills Linked To Lower Ovarian Cancer Risk

A recent study by Duke University School of Medicine supports findings that women who use oral contraceptives are less likely to develop ovarian cancer later in life, Reuters reports. Dr. Laura Havrilesky, who led the study, said, “It reinforces that… more »
  05:12:45 am, by MedBen5   , 248 words,  
Categories: News, Health Plan Management

Health Care Fraud Can Be Costly To Employers

Taken together, the leading causes of medical fraud cost employers $4.93 per member per year in unnecessary payments, according to a new study by Truven Health Analytics. Employee Benefit News listed the six most common factors that drive fraud in… more »

06/12/13

  05:05:38 pm, by MedBen5   , 154 words,  
Categories: News, Wellness

Study Links Mother's Obesity To Higher Premature Birth Risk

A new Swedish study suggests overweight and obese women are more likely to give birth prematurely, Reuters reports. The study, conducted by Dr. Sven Cnattingius of the Karolinska Institute in Stockholm, analyzed 1.6 million pregnant women and their… more »

06/11/13

  05:20:16 pm, by MedBen5   , 127 words,  
Categories: Announcements

MedBen Releases ICD-10 Readiness Statement

In anticipation of the national changeover from current ICD-9 medical diagnosis and inpatient procedure codes to ICD-10 in 2014, MedBen has released this Readiness Statement: “MedBen will be fully compliant with the upcoming ICD-10 mandate by the… more »
  05:11:50 pm, by MedBen5   , 207 words,  
Categories: News, Wellness

One Dental Checkup A Year Enough For Some, Study Suggests

Two dental cleanings a year may be overkill for some people – though most patients do benefit from semi-annual checkups, a new University of Michigan study suggests. According to HealthDay News (via WebMD), study author William Giannobile and… more »
  03:29:41 pm, by MedBen5   , 208 words,  
Categories: News, Prescription

Federal Government Approves OTC “Morning After” Pill For Females Of All Ages

The Justice Department recently stated it would stop fighting the order requiring it to remove age restrictions on over-the-counter sales of the “morning after” pill, the Associated Press reports. The Food and Drug Administration has instructed Teva,… more »

06/10/13

  05:05:55 pm, by MedBen5   , 269 words,  
Categories: News

Ohio House Of Representatives Honors MedBen

As we noted on Friday, State Representative Jay Hottinger, on behalf of the Ohio House of Representatives, presented MedBen with an official proclamation commemorating the company’s 75th birthday. The proclamation reads: OHIO HOUSE OF… more »

06/07/13

  05:14:42 pm, by MedBen5   , 553 words,  
Categories: News

Music, Memories Highlight MedBen 75th Birthday Celebration

Clients, brokers and other invited VIPs joined MedBen employees at the Midland Theatre in Newark, Ohio on Monday, June 3 to celebrate the company’s 75th birthday. The event featured a private reception outside the theatre followed by a special concert… more »
  04:44:03 pm, by MedBen5   , 182 words,  
Categories: News, Prescription

FDA May Relax Restrictions On Diabetes Pill Avandia

A majority on a Food and Drug Administration advisory panel voted yesterday to ease safety restrictions on the former blockbuster diabetes pill Avandia, the Associated Press reports. The decision came after a new analysis suggested that the drug may not… more »
  03:44:36 pm, by MedBen5   , 179 words,  
Categories: News, Wellness

Small Changes In Habits Can Help Prevent A Stroke

One of the leading causes of death today in the United States is a stroke, which is linked to approximately 129,500 deaths per year. But Americans can do a better job at preventing a stroke, which occurs when blood vessels burst or is blocked in the… more »

06/06/13

  05:22:09 pm, by MedBen5   , 154 words,  
Categories: News, Health Plan Management

Health Care Reform Law Continues To Poll Negatively

With just months to go before some major provisions of the Affordable Care Act go into effect, most public opinion of President Obama’s signature legislature continues to fall in the “against” camp. A new NBC News/Wall Street Journal… more »
  04:59:08 pm, by MedBen5   , 174 words,  
Categories: News, Prescription, Wellness

Aspirin A Cost-effective Way To Prevent Clots, Study Finds

The aspirin in your medicine cabinet may just as good and effective as expensive blood-thinning medication for preventing blood clots after major surgery, a new study suggests. According to WebMD, researchers in Nova Scotia followed 778 patients who… more »

06/04/13

  01:18:50 pm, by MedBen5   , 164 words,  
Categories: News

Rising Popularity Of Small Group Self-funding Nothing New To MedBen

Several large employers, “will begin offering smaller employers… the option of so-called self-insurance in some markets later this year,” The Wall Street Journal recently reported: “For small businesses, being self-insured would… more »
  12:48:46 pm, by MedBen5   , 237 words,  
Categories: News, Prescription

Study Sees Decline In New Drug Effectiveness Over The Years

Newer doesn’t always mean better, as the saying goes. (Actually, we’re not really sure if there is such a saying – but if not, there should be.) And pharmaceutical research on published yesterday drives the point home. According to… more »
  11:45:10 am, by MedBen5   , 207 words,  
Categories: News, Wellness

Smokers Cost Their Employers $6,000 Annually, Study Finds

A new study reveals that smokers cost employers $6,000 a year more than non-smokers, NBC News reports. In making this determination, lead researcher Micah Berman of Ohio State University and colleagues looked not only at costs of medical treatment for… more »