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11/15/17

  11:26:00 pm, by MedBen5   , 209 words,  
Categories: Compliance

By the Numbers: Your 2018 Health Plan Budget

budget

Working on your 2018 health plan budget? If so, you’ll want to keep the following limitations and penalties in mind. The following apply as of the first day of your plan’s 2018 plan year:

Out-of-Pocket Maximums

  • $7,350 for self-only (employee-only) coverage.
  • $14,700 for other than self-only coverage.
  • Over these thresholds, employers must pay 100% of the benefits covered by the plan.

Employer-Shared Responsibility Penalties

  • $2,320 per employee (for all employees combined) if qualifying coverage is not offered to 95% of the employer’s employees working 30 or more hours per week.
  • $3,480 per each employee for whom the employer-offered coverage is deemed unaffordable.

Affordability Safe Harbors

  • 9.56% – Employee cost-share for employer-offered coverage must be less than 9.56% of one of the ACA safe harbor amounts (federal poverty level, W-2 salary or hourly rate of pay) for cost-share to be deemed affordable. Note: this is a reduction from the 2017 percentage.
  • $12,060 – Federal Poverty Level (FPL) Safe Harbor Amount for 2018.

PCORI Fee (Due July 31, 2018)

  • $2.39 per covered life for plan years ending on October 31, 2017, November 30, 2017 or December 31, 2017.
  • $2.26 per covered life for all other plan years.
  • A “covered life” means each and every individual covered under an applicable plan (i.e., employee, retiree, spouse, and dependent).

MedBen clients who have questions regarding these numbers are welcome to contact Vice President of Compliance Caroline Fraker at 800-851-0907 or cfraker@medben.com.

11/09/17

  10:21:00 pm, by MedBen5   , 333 words,  
Categories: Wellness, Preventive care

See Your Family Doctor for a “Change”

doctor consultation

We see change happening around us every day... but as we approach the final months of the year, what changes have you seen in yourself over the last year? More importantly, what changes haven’t you noticed? Your family physician can tell you what you may be missing.

Developing a relationship with your family physician is very important. With regular visits, your doctor will learn your family history and to understand your “normal,” allowing them to detect early symptoms of conditions you might otherwise overlook... and early detection is key to a healthier lifestyle and lower medical bills.

A wellness visit should create a dialog between you and your physician, so be sure to be honest about any medical concerns you’ve encountered. Be mindful, too, that while preventative care is free, treatment of previous conditions are not. Be sure to remind your doctor and the other medical staff seeing you that you are there for a wellness visit and that it should be billed as such.

If a healthier life and lower medical costs weren’t already enough of an incentive to get your annual exam, many plans have added incentives for getting your exam (and other recommended screenings) prior to the end of the plan year. If your plan has these incentives, you’ll want to get your screenings scheduled soon!

Full story »

11/05/17

  11:35:00 pm, by MedBen5   , 279 words,  
Categories: News, Heart, Research

Study Calls into Question Value of Heart Stents

stent

British researchers have determined that a regimen of medications can be just as effective in treating heart patients as a coronary stent insertion to open blocked arteries. The results raise questions about the value of using stents for the treatment of stable angina – a procedure that can cost as much as $40,000 for the 500,000 Americans who receive it annually.

According to The New York Times, the study authors recruited 200 patients with a profoundly blocked coronary artery and treated them for six weeks with drugs to reduce their heart attack risk. All patients then underwent the stent procedure, but only half actually had the device inserted. Neither the patients nor the researchers knew who had received the stent, and both patient groups took additional drugs to prevent blood clots post-procedure.

Six weeks following the stent procedure, both groups said they had less chest pain and showed improvement on treadmill test.

If the results of the study hold and a stent was no more effective than a placebo (which, by the way, has consistently been proven to be quite effective) then another consideration is the risk to patients from a) the introduction of a foreign body into the patient, and b) the additional risk posed to the patient if a an anti-platelet such as Plavix is used and is ineffective because of genetic makeup or poor patient adherence. In those situations, the stent could have increased the risk of problems for the patient.

History has demonstrated that a combination of qutting smoking, proper diet and exercise, and drug treatment has been successful in preventing heart disease. MedBen recommends to clients that such measures have been thoroughly explored before invasive procedures are considered.

  01:55:00 am, by MedBen5   , 220 words,  
Categories: Health Plan Management, Cost savings, Research, Third party administration, Trend, Claims management

MedBen Beats Trend by Focusing on Claim Costs

MedBen building

Medical plan trend has kept stable over the last few years. Even so, MedBen has consistently remained under national trend by emphasizing the highest driver of plan costs – claims.

According to the 2018 Segal Health Plan Cost Trend Survey, medical trend* for active employees and retirees under 65 for the years 2012 through 2016 averaged 6.5%. By contrast, the MedBen medical trend for the same four-year period was just 2.1%. Even if pharmacy costs (which have lately experienced much higher trend) are also considered, our overall trend rises to only 3.2%.

Because "all claims are not created equal," MedBen approaches them differently depending on the type and size of the claim. For example, while every claim gets a thorough examination to ensure that it meets medical necessity and billing standards, large claims receive even closer scrutiny, including review by certified medical specialists.

Pharmacy claims, too, merit a different kind of examination. The rise of expensive specialty drugs demands that such claims are reviewed to ensure that lower-cost medications aren't available or therapeutic alternatives haven't been overlooked.

More than ever, MedBen has the technical, analytic and personnel tools to keep client expenses in check and plan cost trend low. For additional insight into how we do it, contact Vice President of Sales & Marketing Brian Fargus at bfargus@medben.com.

* Includes open-access preferred provider organization (PPO) and point-of-service (POS) plans.

11/03/17

  10:23:00 pm, by MedBen5   , 204 words,  
Categories: Wellness, Cancer, Diabetes, Preventive care

With Worksite Wellness, the News Is Good

checkup

Three recent news items that caught our eye...

So, what’s the connection? All three of these positive findings coincide with increased efforts to detect and treat chronic conditions and diseases as early as possible... efforts that start with regular wellness exams and age- and gender-appropriate screenings.

The MedBen WellLiving program is based on the simple idea that an emphasis on preventive care delivers long-term advantages – financial in addition to physical. For diabetes and high cholesterol, early detection allows for plan members to receive specialized counseling on controlling their condition. And for a major disease like breast cancer, treatment in its earlier stages may save hundreds of thousands of dollars... to say nothing of its life-saving potential.

Better health is good news to your employees and your business. Learn the benefits of MedBen WellLiving by contacting Vice President of Sales & Marketing Brian Fargus at bfargus@medben.com.

10/31/17

  08:52:00 pm, by MedBen5   , 271 words,  
Categories: Announcements, News, Quality, ISO

MedBen Continues to Maintain ISO Standards, Latest Audit Finds

ISO 9001 Certified

MedBen continues to maintain ISO 9001 standards, according to a recent audit of the company's management system by independent auditor SAI Global.

Following an onsite audit on October 4th of various internal functions and processes, the auditor reported that, "Based on the evidence verified and findings of this audit, the management system is being managed and utilized by all employees interviewed.”

"The recommendation from this audit is that your certification continues."

For this audit, SAI Global verified that MedBen's 2017 Quality Objectives, which include an ongoing commitment to improving customer satisfaction and reducing operating cost in key processes, continue to be addressed and fulfilled.

The auditor also praised a new MedBen document called the "Risk Matrix." Created to support a new ISO 9001:2015 requirement that Certified companies consider risk and opportunities in their management system, the matrix provides an easy way to access relevant company issues (i.e., product expansion, security risks) and confirm that they have been thoroughly examined prior to implementation.

"MedBen has always identified risks and opportunities in the course of doing business, and always worked on mitigating risk," noted MedBen Chairman & CEO Doug Freeman. "The matrix is a simple demonstration method that we can use to review and document consideration of those risks and opportunities."

Back in June, SAI Global recommended MedBen for ISO 9001 recertification - the third such reassessment audit since we first earned certification in 2005. But between the triannual recertifications, MedBen also undergoes twice-yearly surveillance audits to ensure that quality standards continue to be met at all times.

SAI Global provides organizations around the world with information services and solutions for managing risk, achieving compliance and driving business improvement.

10/27/17

  07:25:00 pm, by MedBen5   , 214 words,  
Categories: News, Consumer-driven Health Plans, Flexible spending accounts (FSAs)

IRS Bumps Up Health FSA Contribution Maximum

IRS building

The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) has announced the annual inflation adjustment for flexible spending accounts (FSAs) for the 2018 tax year. As has been the case in previous years, contribution limits will see only modest increases or remain unchanged.

The 2018 dollar limitation on voluntary employee salary reductions for contributions to health FSAs is $2,650, up slightly from the current $2,600 maximum. Funds from these accounts can be used to pay for qualified medical expenses, including (but not limited to): deductibles, copays, and coinsurance; insulin, bandages, and other pharmacy items; eye exams and vision expenses; and dental and orthodontic expenses. Health FSA funds can also be used to pay for common over-the counter medications (i.e., aspirin, ibuprofen, and cough syrup), but only if accompanied by a doctor's prescription.

The dependent care FSA maximum annual contribution will hold steady at $5,000 in 2018. These accounts reimburse the employee for employment-related dependent care while the plan participant and spouse work (or look for work), such as payments to a day care center or baby-sitter, or expenses to care for a disabled spouse or other tax dependent.

MedBen clients who would like to increase their Health FSA employee maximum to $2,650, or who have any questions regarding FSA contributions, are welcome to contact Director of Administrative Services Sharon A. Mills at (800) 423-3151, Ext. 438 or smills@medben.com.

10/22/17

  08:23:00 pm, by MedBen5   , 213 words,  
Categories: Wellness, Reporting, Cost savings

Claims-Based Wellness Approach Pays Healthy Dividends

heart and EKG

Unlike traditional wellness programs that require employees to complete imprecise and unreliable health risk assessments, MedBen WellLiving takes a claims-based approach. And that distinction makes a big difference on the long-term success – and savings – of your program.

Right at the start, MedBen WellLiving uses claims data analysis to identify plan members that could benefit from specialized nurse coaching. Likewise, our “physician first” emphasis not only eliminates the redundancies of on-site biometric screenings, it provides data for future analyses.

Additionally, WellLiving clients get ongoing wellness progress reports, such as the prevalence of chronic conditions and the costs of treating disease states within the population. They also receive compliance rates for early detection testing... again, based solely on the group's claims data.

Why does all this matter? By having a wellness program built on actual claims data and timely reporting, employers are better positioned to see where the program is working, and where incentives may be focused to improve compliance, thereby creating a healthier population

As for the savings, the numbers speak for themselves: From 2014 to 2016, WellLiving clients experienced an average claims cost trend of just 1.6%... just a fraction of national trend.

Learn more about the ways MedBen WellLiving can benefit your business by contacting Vice President of Sales & Marketing Brian Fargus at bfargus@medben.com.

  08:15:00 pm, by MedBen5   , 273 words,  
Categories: Privacy, MedBen Employees, HIPAA

MedBen HIPAA Training Stresses Proper Use of PHI

HIPAA training

As part of ongoing efforts to ensure the privacy of client PHI (protected health information), all MedBen employees recently attended HIPAA (Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act) refresher training, with sessions led by Vice President of Compliance Caroline Fraker.

While employees get regular HIPAA training at the department level, this companywide training was given to advise employees about the regulatory and contractual requirements of HIPAA and to provide an overview of technical and physical safeguards in place to protect the data we manage.

At the training session, Fraker said that "HIPAA defines how protected information can be used, discussed, accessed, and accounted for. And that goes not just for medical information, but all personal data."

Attendees reviewed the rights that all individuals have under HIPAA, as well as MedBen’s internal policies for safeguarding clients protected health and individually identifiable information. Our HIPAA Workforce Policy is accessible to all employees through the company's internal website.

"Make sure to verify who you are talking to in person, on the phone and via e-mail," Fraker said. "If you receive mail or an e-mail that looks suspicious, call the person who sent it at a verifiable phone number to make sure they sent it before providing PHI."

MedBen’s role as a business associate of its clients was also reviewed... in particular, the rules regarding the disclosure of data to vendors and stop-loss partners. "Any individual or organization that wants protected health information from us must prove that they are a business associate of the client," Fraker cautioned.

MedBen clients who have questions about HIPAA or the use of PHI are welcome to contact Fraker at 800-851-0907 or cfraker@medben.com.

10/20/17

  08:54:00 pm, by MedBen5   , 192 words,  
Categories: News, Prescription, Transparency, Pharmacy benefit manager (PBM)

Pharmacy Benefit Transparency? Nothing New for MedBen Clients

pills

Pharmacy benefit transparency has been given a national spotlight with Anthem’s well-publicized allegations that Express Scripts overcharged them for prescription drugs (creating, in Anthem's words, an “obscene profit windfall”). In the latest development, Anthem has announced a partnership with CVS designed to “bolster transparency” for clients beginning in the year 2020.

While MedBen applauds such efforts, our clients have experienced pharmacy benefit transparency for the last 15 years. And while transparency is important since all self-funded health plans should understand what happens to their money, it is only part of the equation. The other part is another critical element of MedBen’s pharmacy offering: pass-through pricing.

What pass-through pricing means is that the pharmacy discounts and paid rebates are passed on the client, rather than being shaved by a middleman. This is how MedBen has practiced pharmacy benefit management with our clients since we developed our program. The result is superior pharmacy benefit performance for MedBen clients.

There’s no need to wait until 2020 for true pharmacy benefit transparency... MedBen can deliver it to you today. It is how we do business. Learn more by contacting Vice President of Sales & Marketing Brian Fargus at bfargus@medben.com.

  03:34:00 pm, by MedBen5   , 185 words,  
Categories: Prescription, Reporting, Cancer, Cost savings

Specialty Drug Projection: $25 Billion Annually

pills and mortar

According to a recent Mercer survey (as reported by Reuters), over the next five years, between 40 to 50 new specialty drugs will be launched on the market each year. These could increase costs by $25 billion annually. (No, that’s not a typo… $25 BILLION annually.)

Many of these specialty drugs were developed to treat costly diseases such as cancer, multiple sclerosis, and hepatitis C. The hope is that, however expensive these medications may be, they will be a cheaper alternative to prolonged medical treatment -- but of course, drug companies offer no guarantee of their effectiveness for every patient.

It also must be stressed that certain specialty drugs are merely two or more existing medications combined into one "convenient" (and pricey) pill. To guard against the use of such drugs, MedBen offers a discretionary formulary listing high-cost drugs that have low-cost generics available. To receive an updated copy, just contact your group service representative.

Specialty drug growth shows no signs of slowing, so MedBen is committed to helping employers keep Rx spending in check. Find out more by contacting Vice President of Sales & Marketing Brian Fargus at bfargus@medben.com.

10/18/17

  09:07:00 pm, by MedBen5   , 596 words,  
Categories: Announcements, MedBen Employees

MedBen Employees Celebrate Silver Anniversaries (Part Two)

25 Anniversary celebrants

On this blog, MedBen has been honoring employees who are observing benchmark anniversaries with the company in 2017 – among them, three marking their 30th anniversaries and eight celebrating 25 years. In this latter group, we earlier highlighted four silver anniversary celebrants... and below, we are pleased to spotlight the remaining four.

Eugene Danner

Eugene Danner started out at MedBen as an Examiner for dental, life, and disability claims. But when a job position in the Information Systems Department opened up, he grabbed it... and in the process, found his true calling as a Technical Services Analyst.

MedBen has been in business for nearly 80 years, due in large part to the stability provided by loyal team members like Danner. In turn, he appreciates MedBen's ability to anticipate and adapt to marketplace changes and that "leadership acknowledges when employees take the time and effort to solve issues."

On a personal level, Danner likes the convenience of working local and the chance to advance from within the company. "The life that I have been able to provide for my wife and her two children for the last 25-plus years means a lot to me," Danner said. "I also appreciate the investment opportunities for retirement that MedBen provides."

Caroline Fraker has always been something of a stickler for details. Beginning in 1992 as Compliance Analyst, and today as Vice President of Compliance and Chief Privacy Officer, she takes great pride in helping MedBen clients stay on top of regulatory issues and better understand how those issues affect their plans.

Fraker appreciates MedBen for "the opportunity to be involved with smart, dedicated people who are all working to provide the best service possible. I know that may sound hokey, but at other places I’ve worked the people are working for themselves – not each other or their clients," she said.

Like other employees celebrating an important anniversary this year, Fraker credits her co-workers for making her job so enjoyable: "The people at MedBen have truly become my work family. I love coming to work each day!"

Full story »

10/17/17

  04:25:00 pm, by MedBen5   , 377 words,  
Categories: Wellness, Cancer, Preventive care

Here’s Your Sign: Breast Cancer Screening

doctor consultation

What do 12.4%, 22% and 100% all have in common? Breast cancer.

12.4% of women born in the United States will develop breast cancer. That’s nearly 1 in 8 women who will find that the disease, in which malignant cells form in the tissues of the breasts is invading their body.

Nearly 100% of women diagnosed in the early stages (stages 0-1) receive a treatment plan, a good prognosis and survive. Physical examinations from your family physician and self-monitoring for changes (and then notifying your physician of those changes) are all great places to start in detecting the disease. However, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, different people have different symptoms of breast cancer and some do not show any symptoms at all. So, if you’re waiting for a sign before you get a screening, here it is: When breast cancer is caught in later stages of 4-5, that 100% substantially drops to 22%.

These statistics are one reason MedBen WellLiving promotes breast cancer screenings through biannual mammograms for women ages 40 and older. And it seems to be catching on, too; According to a recent study, the death rate from breast cancer decreased 40% from 1989 to 2015, thanks in part to early detection.

The fact is, we don’t know exactly what causes breast cancer. We do, however, know what inflates the risks including, genetics, hormones, and obesity. Some can be managed, while other can not. However, we all have an opportunity to receive a mammogram and other recommended screenings to hopefully catch it in the earliest stages possible. For more information, seek guidance from your family physician.

SOURCES: Cancer.gov, Cancer.org, Washington Post, National Breast Cancer Foundation

Full story »

10/08/17

  08:31:00 pm, by MedBen5   , 337 words,  
Categories: News, Prescription, Health Care Reform

Issue 2 Offers Uncertainty for Sponsors of Prescription Drug Plans

pills

The Ohio Drug Price Relief Act, better known as Issue 2, has sparked plenty of debate (and earned TV stations a lot of money in ad time). If approved, the initiative would enable the state to buy prescription drugs for Medicaid and state retirement programs at prices comparable to what the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) pays for them.

While it is difficult to predict what will happen if Issue 2 passes, the issue is specific in its requirements of the state on drug payments it makes to pharmacies, but short on implementation details. This poorly-worded mixture will likely lead to uncertainty, confusion, and litigation… and while not directly affecting employer-sponsored drug plans, these elements may lead to unforeseen long-term consequences.

If Issue 2 passes and is implemented on its language alone, it’s possible that the following scenario could play out at pharmacies statewide:

  1. The pharmacy buys a medicine at $100.
  2. The state, by mandate under Issue 2, would be required to pay the pharmacy (in this example) the VA price of $75.
  3. The pharmacy will lose money on every one of those prescriptions.

Because pharmacies are unable to “cost shift” to private employers or Medicare – those reimbursements are controlled by the pharmacy benefit managers (PBMs) – the options for that pharmacy include:

  • Shifting cost to the very few “cash” customers (a small proportion of patients);
  • Turning away all patients under state reimbursement (predominantly Medicaid); and/or
  • Close their doors in those markets dominated with Medicaid and poor cash pay customers.

It is likely that if Issue 2 passes, retail pharmacies in poor urban neighborhoods and poor rural counties with heavy Medicaid populations will have to close their pharmacies or turn into “convenience marts” or sundry shops, and these patients, because of limited travel capabilities, will lose access to necessary medicines.

Drug company prices have become a big concern for health plans. The Issue 2 legal mandate will not address those concerns. In fact, it could harm competition and make the situation worse in Ohio.

Related materials:

  08:12:00 pm, by MedBen5   , 569 words,  
Categories: Announcements, MedBen Employees

MedBen Employees Celebrate Silver Anniversaries (Part One)

Recently, we recognized three MedBen employees who in 2017 are marking 30 years with MedBen... a noteworthy achievement, to be certain. But no less impressive is that eight of our employees are this year celebrating their 25th anniversaries with us, and they also merit special recognition. MedBen is proud of our long-time association with each one of them, and their contributions to our growth and continued success cannot be understated.

The 25th anniversary celebrants include: Keith Caudill; Eugene Danner; Caroline Fraker; Nanette Gray; Kelley Hahn; Tammy Murphy; Diana Vlachos; and Janet White. Below, we spotlight four of these employees -- we'll do the same for the remaining four in an upcoming article.

25th Anniversary celebrants

Keith Caudill joined MedBen as a Programmer/Analyst at a time when the company was making the transition from paper-based recordkeeping to storing data on a secure computer network. Now a Senior Programmer/Analyst, he has played a huge part in ensuring the safety and privacy of client information, while allowing fast access to those employees whose jobs require it.

"I’ve really enjoyed working with everyone over the years... I’ve met a lot of good people and had fun here," Caudill said when asked about his 25 years with MedBen. "I also like how the company supports and encourages us to support local charities."

Nanette Gray has, at different times, worked in the Claims and Customer Service Departments, and today works in both… sort of. In her role as Customer Service Liaison for the Claims team, she provides claims information necessary for representatives to answer plan members’ questions accurately and efficiently.

"I like working for a company that not only cares about your job performance, but how their employees are doing on a personal level as well," Gray said. "We aren’t just employees here, we are a family of people that care about one another."

Gray added that MedBen also cares about the community and offers many ways employees can reach out, such as through Families Helping Families, in which employees "adopt" less fortunate children at Christmas time.

Full story »

10/06/17

  10:33:00 pm, by MedBen5   , 154 words,  
Categories: News, Prescription, Health Care Reform

HHS Revises ACA Contraception Mandate

birth control

The Trump administration announced on October 6 that the Affordable Care Act’s (ACA) contraception mandate will be scaled back to allow exemptions for employers that claim a religious or moral objection to covering birth control, The Washington Post reports.

Two new regulations, issued by the Health and Human Services Department (HHS), will take effect immediately. The first exempts entities with "sincerely held religious beliefs" from the mandate, while the other exempts entities that object "on the basis of moral conviction [that] is not based in any particular religious belief," HHS said.

This policy essentially broadens exemptions already available to churches and faith-affiliated charities, colleges and hospitals. Those employers could opt out of providing contraceptive coverage by notifying their insurer, third party administrator or the federal government – and the same option will apply under the new rules.

MedBen clients with questions regarding these regulations are welcome to contact Vice President of Compliance Carline Fraker at cfraker@medben.com.

10/05/17

  05:01:00 pm, by MedBen5   , 229 words,  
Categories: Announcements, News, Wellness, Preventive care

In Praise of Primary Care

doctor and patient

At KevinMD.com, family physician Glen R. Stream reminds us that this week is National Primary Care Week (just in case you somehow forgot), and the critical role that these doctors play:

"A wealth of research continues to show that primary care not only reduces costs, but also helps achieve high-quality care that effectively manages population health. It is key to delivering on the 'triple aim' of better health, better care, at lower costs.

"Primary care is truly the best buy in health care and, with the right investments, it has the potential to provide even greater value to the health care system."

With the MedBen WellLiving program, the path to better health and better care at lower costs starts with promoting prevention -- and on that path, primary care physicians serve as excellent guides. When your plan members establish ongoing doctor-patient relationships, the odds of their doctor detecting a chronic condition in its earliest stages increases exponentially. That translates to a healthier workplace and fewer high-dollar claims.

Reducing the care gap in your employee population isn’t difficult… all it takes is the right incentive to encourage annual wellness exams and regular screenings with a primary care provider. WellLiving helps you help your plan members make smart choices about their health.

Learn more about primary prevention with MedBen WellLiving by contacting Vice President of Sales & Marketing Brian Fargus at bfargus@medben.com.

09/24/17

  10:19:00 pm, by MedBen5   , 301 words,  
Categories: Announcements, News, MedBen Employees

Freeman, Delcher and Harris Celebrate 30 Years with MedBen

30th Anniversary celebrants

MedBen recently marked a most impressive benchmark: Three of our employees, including Chairman of the Board & CEO Doug Freeman, were honored for 30 years of service at an employee appreciation luncheon on Friday, September 15. Employees who had reached other noteworthy anniversaries were also recognized for their achievements.

Freeman was hired as President in 1987 to lead MedBen as it made its journey from a hospital services association to a multi-service health benefits management company. He was elected to Chairman in 2012.

From his previous employer Freeman enlisted Cara Delcher, who too was honored at the event. Delcher joined MedBen as a Systems Coordinator, and was named a Vice President in 1992. Now residing in California, she serves as Senior Business Analyst and Quality Coordinator.

Rounding out the three-decade honorees was Janice Harris, who preceded Freeman and Delcher at MedBen by several months. Initially alternating between the Administration and Information System departments, she was soon working in IS exclusively – and continues to do so today as an Operations and Security Administrator.

25th Anniversary celebrants

In addition to the 30-year benchmarks, eight MedBen employees were singled out for their 25 years of service to MedBen. These include (in alphabetical order):

  • Keith Caudill, Senior Programmer Analyst;
  • Eugene Danner, Technical Services;
  • Caroline Fraker, Vice President of Compliance & Chief Privacy Officer;
  • Nanette Gray, Customer Service Liason;
  • Kelley Hahn, Proposal Manager;
  • Tammy Murphy, Claims Examiner III;
  • Diana Vlachos, Director of Human Resources; and
  • Janet White, Claims Examiner II.

(More about our 25th Anniversary celebrants soon!)

Other MedBen employees honored at the luncheon include:

20 Years of Service: Tanya Godsell, Kathi Hay, Becca Hostetler, Sharon Mills, Darcy Sickles and Debbie Stephens.
15 Years of Service: Brian Abrams, Robin Becker and Kory McPeck.
10 Years of Service: SueMarie Beaumont, Jody Blaney, Mary Fair, Erin Kelly, Stefanie Kirkpatrick and Sally Wood.
5 Years of Service: Samantha Hammond and Heidi Smith.

  10:13:00 pm, by MedBen5   , 245 words,  
Categories: News, Reporting, Population health management, MedBen Employees

MedBen Talks Health Management at Innovation Conference

Kurt Harden

MedBen clients were among those getting useful benefits management advice at the 4th Annual Sherrill Morgan Healthcare Innovation Conference on September 11-12, 2017. MedBen itself was also well-represented at the event, both as presenters and on the conference floor.

"Preventable, chronic conditions make up about 70% of deaths in America," MedBen President & COO Kurt Harden noted during his Population Health Management presentation on the first morning of the conference. He added that "since gaps in care are related to evidence-based treatments, closing these gaps reduce risk factors, which ultimately lowers per-patient per-month and aggregate costs.”

Harden also shared the dais with Mark Morgan, President of Sherrill Morgan, to discuss the advantages of "own use" pharmacies for hospital groups. By encouraging plan members to buy their prescription drugs from the hospital’s own pharmacy, hospitals can realize substantial savings.

Brooke Hupp

MedBen Vice President of Sales & Marketing Brian Fargus and Regional Sales Manager Brooke Hupp were also in attendance, meeting with clients and providing them with Risk Stratification Reports that identify cost and risk factors in their member populations, plus identifying specific improvement strategies. Clients also received summary breakdowns chronic conditions with suggestions for reducing their groups' care gaps.

MedBen was also pleased to sponsor a cocktail reception at the Cincinnati Zoo, complete with access to the zoo's African exhibits.

MedBen has worked with benefits consulting firm Sherrill Morgan for over two decades. Based in Covington, KY (right on the Ohio border), the company has provided employer consulting services since 1969.

  09:03:00 pm, by MedBen5   , 206 words,  
Categories: News, MedBen Employees

MedBen Employees Take Part in United Way Week of Caring

MedBen is proud to be among the area companies that participated in the United Way of Licking County (OH) Week of Caring from September 15 to 22, 2017. Sixteen of our team members volunteered their time and talents toward the betterment of our community.

MedBen employees rolled up their sleeves (well, those who weren't wearing T-shirts) to participate in various United Way projects. Our team members could be found throughout Licking County during the week, starting at The Woodlands' New Beginnings shelter in Newark, where volunteers spent the afternoon painting the shelves of their food pantry.

Newark's Group Home for Developmentally Disabled also saw MedBen hard at work, with team members scraping and priming the house to prep for painting. And a similar scene occurred at the House of New Hope in St. Louisville, as our volunteers took to power washing and painting the building. Quite a change of pace from paying claims, but we were happy to help!

United Way is among the many charities and non-profit organizations MedBen has partnered with over the years. We've also been honored to support Food Pantry Network, Families Helping Families, A Call to College, Big Brothers/Big Sisters, Licking County Community Health Clinic, and the Midland Theatre, to name just a few.

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