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MBriefs Byte Sized Benefits | February 2020 Edition

This month’s issue of MBriefs has a distinct DC “buzz” to it. You have your “Fake News” as it pertains to the coronavirus. Misinformation to home remedies that will make your head spin, the internet is all a-buzz in conspiracies from those people that wear tinfoil hats to keep the government from reading their minds. In case that isn’t interesting enough, we will stick around the DC Beltway to talk about health care legislation that will be implemented this year just prior to the Presidential Election. Generic insulin, pricing transparency, and reference-based pricing are only a few of the items being addressed in 2020. Too bad they can’t make truth serum part of the candidate discussion…And finally, we share MB’s “Five Ways to Put Money Back in Your Pocket” as it pertains to health care – no, this doesn’t include “do it yourself medicine” or “don’t see a doctor until it turns green” approach to saving money. We actually have practical advice. There are two words you will never hear side by side in Washington DC – practical advice. “Chief Justice, I yield the remainder of my time to these very cool articles.”

The Real Stuff You Need to Know

<sniff, cough, cough> OMG Lock Down!

Rumors can spread faster than the disease. Yes, the coronavirus is a definite health issue, there is no denying the severity of that, but has it become more than a health concern? Is it media overload? Last week, a Weather Channel notification popped up about the cruise ship detaining 7,000 vacationers off the coast of Italy due to a couple with possible coronavirus symptoms. Now, unless they report a wave swell was dangerously high, or a sudden iceberg is in the path, not sure this is a Weather Channel concern. Social Media and national news can stir mass hysteria that can affect industries worldwide, and yet here we are sharing a story about too much news. So, as an insurance broker, what you need to know to prevent a medical claim: Wash your hands, keep your hands off your face, and avoid anyone who is feeling poorly. Sorry, no idea how high the waves are.

2020-Year of the Rat…(oh, and it’s election year)

We have been battling President Obama’s ACA Health Care plan since its inception, and with this being an election year, the debates will be riddled with health care positions going forward. Skippy. Some political deliberations can be painful to hear, over and over, like the insane increase of insulin cost or any drug price, honestly. Our current administration has put several bills in motion. It makes one curious, which will still be standing after the election.

Video Links for Quick Health Care Knowledge

It’s happening more and more; people are beginning to research their health care service options before taking action. You have options and with each choice, you can put money back in your pocket. For example, you could shop pharmacies, image services, even hospitals for the lowest cost. Generally, with the lowest costs, they will provide a higher quality of service. It sounds backwards, but it’s true.

Side Affects: Our Podcast to Provoke You to Think Differently

Can you imagine creating a company-wide communication piece in multiple languages addressing diverse cultures? Ken Wigton of Michelman, Inc., globally headquartered in Cincinnati, OH, joins CEO Scott McGohan and Side Affects producer Kenzie Fell to discuss how Michelman is able to share the Midwest culture with seven locations in the US, Europe, and Asia. Ken says it all starts with being consistent with their hiring process. First, you obviously must have the skill to do the job, but more importantly, your character and your integrity must encompass Michelman’s well-being mind-set. Associates are encouraged to be curious and do more than just check the box to complete a task. Creating partnerships that take Michelman a step beyond.

Events You Should Probably Plan to Attend

The True Cause of Health Care Cost Increases

Interested in learning how to take the expected 8-9% annual increase for health care and reinvest those dollars into your organization? Join Scott Fuqua, to learn the true cause of health care cost increases, the mis-aligned incentives, and the overall lack of transparency. This presentation will outline targeted strategies and address the hidden problems. Scott presents both the problems and the solutions of health care. When acted upon, these solutions can gain sustainable savings without sacrificing access, quality care or the level of benefits offered to your workforce.

The course has been approved for 1.5 hours of HRCI and SHRM credits.

Speaker: Scott Fuqua, VP of New Business Development for AMPS

Scott Fuqua has built his career learning many sides of health care. Over the years he has experienced Sales and Promotions, Bill Review, PPO and Medical Management, Workers Compensation, Advertising, and Product Development. Scott was involved with several start-up organizations awarding him national recognition: the Inc. 5000 List, Entrepreneur Magazine’s Top 100 organizations 2 years in a row and was voted as Entrepreneur Magazine’s Top Sales Executives in 2003.

He has taken his broad expertise and continued his 25 year-long health care career focusing on various Cost Containment strategies in the self-funded, employee benefits space. Today, Scott is the VP of New Business Development for AMPS and lives in the Chicago-land area. He is passionate about helping employers and in educating the community on inner workings of the healthcare market and the broken US healthcare system.

Scott stays active with his 2 wonderful daughters. He is an avid photographer, artist and outdoors man, and enjoys hiking, mountain biking, and golf. He also has a passion for any live music.

Scott graduated from the University of Illinois, Champaign with a B.A. in Business.

MB Columbus - Thursday, February 13th | 11:30 AM - 1:00 PM

To Post or Not to Post?

Hello HR Execs, it’s finally time for you to join the social media revolution. Embrace social media and use the tools that your employees will understand and accept. With the straight-forward tips listed below, you are one step closer to trending all the way home.

How to Use Technology to Communicate

This month, we are switching gears from social media tips to marketing suggestions that every company should consider. Communication is key -- especially when it comes to employee benefits or health insurance information... but even WE can admit, it's not the most exciting topic! So, to combat these "benefit blues" -- think about these ideas next time you're trying to get a message across to your employees.

QR CODES ARE BACK! That's right, and they are easier than ever to use! Just create your own QR code, add it to a printout, postcard, or website, scan your camera over the icon, and BAM! Instant information at your fingertips. Whether it's a customized video, an address book with important phone numbers, or a PDF file, you now have that information instantly.

TAKE A POLL! Instead of scolding people for having their phones out during an open enrollment meeting... encourage it! You can create a free, interactive poll and use it during your meeting. Ask employees to take their phones out and answer the poll questions for an honest user experience... and it's anonymous! Often, people are embarrassed to ask questions -- using a survey helps give these shy people the confidence to participate!

NEW TEXT ALERT! Everyone is already on their smartphones today... so why not use it to communicate important messages?! Once you gather your employee's contact information, send them reminder texts when you need to convey a quick message! Think about how convenient it is to get that reminder text about your upcoming appointment or a shipping notification... now, you can tell your employees in a simple text that they need to sign up for their annual bio-metric screenings!

Rumor Has It…But Details to Come

New or Old Math: It’s Saving our Hearts

What do you get when you mix a doctor and a mathematician? A tedious cocktail party conversation, and yet, two big brains saving lives. Best friends Arthur Dubrawsi of Carnegie Mellon Robotic Institute and Michael Pinsky of the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center have merged their specialties. It is reported that they collected clinical data from ICU patients to develop algorithms that can predict tachycardia, or in layman’s terms, a racing heartbeat. This data processed by the human medical team could easily go unidentified, but with artificial intelligence (AI) interaction, with algorithms in play, tachycardia is predictable.

Grab a drink and read some more about this riveting medical treatment.

Created By
McGohan Brabender
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