Articles

Telemedicine Poised For Exponential Growth

Telemedicine is a fast growing part of the healthcare industry, with services such as diagnosis, prescription refills, and physician consultations now available to patients remotely. Many Puget Sound providers are on the cutting edge of telehealth, with more following close behind.

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Medicare Part D Notice Reminder:
Deadline of October 14th

As you may recall, with the introduction of Medicare Part D prescription drug benefits, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) imposed certain notice requirements on employers. Employers are required to notify all Medicare beneficiaries of the “creditable” or “non creditable” coverage status of their prescription drug plan at least once every 12 months.  […]

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Drone Insurance: A Market on the Rise

The drone market is forecasted to hit $4.8 billion by 2021. With so many companies and individuals employing unmanned aircraft, the need for insurance coverage will only increase. However, insuring drone operators is not an easy task, especially as FAA regulations change. To provide more information on this up-and-coming insurance market, our Partners at Assurex […]

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2017 HSA Contribution Limits

The IRS recently released the cost-of-living adjustments for health savings accounts (HSAs) and qualified high-deductible health plans (HDHPs) for the 2017 calendar year.

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Employer Reporting – 2016 Draft Forms and Instructions

The IRS has released the 2016 draft forms and instructions for the ACA employer reporting requirement. The 2016 draft forms are very similar to the 2015 forms with only a few small changes; the most significant ones explain how to indicate §4980H transition relief for non-calendar year plans on Form 1094-C and coding conditional offers […]

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OCR Phase 2 HIPAA Audits Underway

The Office for Civil Rights (OCR) of the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) has begun Phase 2 of its HIPAA Audit Program. The scope of this national audit includes covered entities and business associates of various industries and sizes; and all covered entities and business associates are eligible to be audited. Employers offering […]

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Defending Against An Invisible Threat

Pragmatic Cybersecurity for the Interconnected Business THINK YOUR BUSINESS IS REASONABLY SAFE FROM A CYBER-ATTACK? Think again. The threat is so widespread that there is an entire black market built to arm hackers with the tools they need to breach your systems. Even worse, 50 percent of online traffic is automated. It does not sleep. It is ever-present, […]

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​5 Things Washington State’s Best Employers Do

Washington State’s best employers know that offering meaningful and valuable benefits is key to attracting and retaining top talent, but that is easier said than done.

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Equipment Exposures Often Overlooked

In a time where construction activity has exceeded prior high watermarks, contractors are increasingly utilizing owned and rented equipment for projects. From an insurance standpoint, there are key areas of coverage that need to be addressed when structuring a contractor’s equipment program. Continued rental expense and rental reimbursement are a few coverage areas that deserve consideration.

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§4980H Affordability – Opt-Out Guidance

The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) has released proposed rules addressing the relationship between opt-out arrangements and affordability for purposes of subsidy eligibility through a public Exchange and potential §4980H(b) penalties. First addressed in Notice 2015-87 last December, the proposed rules confirm and further clarify that unconditional opt-out payments need to be added to the employee contribution for purposes of determining affordability, while conditional opt-outs generally do not.

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HHS Releases Discrimination Rule Affecting Transgender Benefits

The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) recently released the Final Rule implementing Section 1557 of the Affordable Care Act (ACA), which prohibits certain types of entities from discriminating in health programs on the basis of race, color, national origin, age, disability or sex (including gender identity-based discrimination). Most affected entities are not likely to have discrimination issues related to most of these categories; however, the new rules include significant requirements related to health coverage for transgender individuals that may force changes to current benefits.

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