Capital BlueCross Orders Theranos To Stop Drawing Patients’ Blood


Capital BlueCross, a Pennsylvania based insurer, threw another blow at the besieged privately-held health-technology and medical-laboratory-services company (based in Palo Alto, California). Capital BlueCross ordered Theranos to seize blood drawings at its consumer outlet in Enola, PA.

One day earlier, Walgreen did something similar. It demanded Theranos to stop sending tests collected at Walgreens pharmacies in Arizona to the Theranos labs in California.

CMS (Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services) detected earlier this week more than five deficiencies related to hematology, documentation, and oversight, and threatened to suspend the Newark, CA lab’s license, or enforce other sanctions if Theranos did not provide a plan to resolve those issues within 10 days.

See also: Wired, Tech Insider

Your Insurance Agent Just Became a Robot


Insurance Tech entrepreneur Snejina Zacharia, a former Gartner executive, launched her startup Insurify last Thursday. By doing so she hopes to take a serious slice of the 220 billion dollar US car insurance industry. Zacharia had already raised 2 million dollar in seed funding for her Cambridge, MA based startup.

The novelty in her endeavor is that your policy advice could from now on be issued by a robot named Evia. A software robot to be more precise, not the one vacuuming your living room.

As usually, an introduction like this sparks fears of massive job losses in the industry affected. Fears which have not materialized in previous instances; in fact, it has turned out time and time again that new technology also brings more jobs. These jobs may shift however from one industry to another, as for example accountants have experienced after the introduction of smart accounting software.

Recently, things have changed though. We are seeing the advent of driver less cars, lawyers are starting to use automated algorithms to sift through documents and there is more to come. So some important changes are on their way.

The Expert Virtual Insurance Agent, a.k.a. Evia, will sift for you through a nearly endless pile of car insurance offerings to help you determine which one is the best for you.

Zacharia thinks some jobs may be lost but the productivity for car insurers at the front end may increase tenfold. This may be somewhat optimistic but we have seen similar effects taking place on other disruptive occasions. Time will tell.

See also: CNET

Car Insurance Roundup, January 30, 2016


Car and home insurance premiums to rise 3 per cent

If you’re under a tight budget and looking for car insurance, chances are you’re not going to like copping a 3 per cent rise to your premiums in 2016.

But a 3 per cent increase, which is at the top of the 2 to 3 per cent inflation target, is the expected average price rise for motor cover as insurers look to beef up profit margins following a year of expensive claims and stiff competition.  


Will your home insurance pay out? One in five claims go unpaid | Moneywise News

At least 350,000 people had a home insurance claim rejected between 2013 and 2014, according to new data released by theAssociation of British Insurers (ABI) for the first time.

Claims against wear and tear were the most commonly rejected, as these aren’t covered by home insurance policies.

Other policyholders were let down because they hadn’t “bought the right cover”, says the ABI. For example, they weren’t insured for events such as accidental damage, which isn’t covered by most home insurance policies as standard. Some also had claims turned down as the value of the claim was less than the excess – which is the fee insurers take from your payout. 


A look at some wacky Liberal ‘stretch goals’ | Blizzard | Ontario | News | Toron

One thing you must admire the Liberals for is their great elasticity when it comes to election promises.

They have surely raised to an art form the ability to promise voters absolutely everything — without actually producing anything.

In their parlance, that’s not actually a promise. 


More traffic accidents during Friday evening rush hour: Study, AsiaOne Singapore News

A study has found that more traffic accidents occur on Friday during the evening rush hour between 5.30pm and 8pm than any other day.

These accidents account for 48 per cent of the total number on any given Friday – a significantly higher proportion compared to other days, insurance company Aviva said today (Jan 28) as it released its findings based on car insurance claims they received last year.

On Mondays, for instance, evening rush-hour accidents account for only 26 per cent. 


Consider ways to spend your tax return before it’s gone – News – McPhersonSentinel – McPherson, KS – McPherson, KS

A tax refund may seem like a gift, but it’s not. Overpaying your taxes is like providing an interest-free loan to Uncle Sam.

Taxpayers who typically get a refund may want to review their withholding and adjust it to more accurately match the tax due. If a refund is large, a taxpayer may want to decrease the amount of income tax withheld from pay by filing a new W-4 form.

For example, a taxpayer receiving a refund of $1,800, who would like more monthly cash flow, can divide the refund amount by the number of pay periods and reduce W-4 accordingly. 


QIC offers cover for off-road driving

Qatar Insurance Company (QIC), the official insurer of this year’s Qatar Motor Show, which opens to the public today at the Doha Exhibition and Convention Centre, will launch at the event the Off-road 360 Cover that covers driving on sand dunes and similar terrains.

“Our latest product, Off-road 360, will give complete peace of mind to customers having cars with off-road capabilities while enjoying the great outdoors,” said Salem al-Mannai, deputy group president and CEO, QIC – Mena region.
“Though the majority of residents in Qatar love driving in the desert, they worry about the damage that may be caused to their vehicles while driving on sand dunes, which rob them of the thrill of an outdoor adventure. By introducing the Off-road 360 Cover, we want to change this negative perception and add an element of excitement and fun to their outdoor adventure.”


Phil Gulley: Love Letter – Indianapolis Monthly

Once a month, Constance, a lady in my Quaker meeting, writes my parents a letter. While she has never met my folks, she knows they’re in poor health and writes to encourage them. The letter comes to my house, then I take it to my parents. Constance’s handwriting is distinctive—I don’t have to open the letter to know it’s from her. Two thoughts often come to mind: Constance sure is nice and Why can’t I be more like Constance? 


£40m Govt investment aims to encourage electric car uptake

The Government has announced a further £40 million in funding for infrastructure to encourage more people to buy electric or hybrid cars.

The cash from the Go Ultra Low City Scheme will be shared among projects in Nottingham, Bristol, Milton Keynes, London, the North East, Oxford, Dundee and York.

Encouragement from the Government in the form of grants and investment to provide more charging points is helping to boost the popularity of electric vehicles. If you are considering stocking electric cars or expanding your services to repair them, check you have the correct levels of motor trade insurance and road risks insurance to cover the work. 


Car Insurance Discounts

Don’t go another day without READING THIS: If you drive less than 40 miles / day you can get auto insurance for as low as $29 a month. Complete our three minute form and see if you qualify…


Car insurance? | Yahoo Answers

What is a good car insurance that has full coverage but is cheap im trying to get a Honda civic si for lease im 19 and trying to get my stuff together so i can be independent. 


New Orleans Car Insurance 70128 LA | Buy Auto Insurance

If your insurance company is making you pay too much for car insurance, it’s time to start looking for the most affordable auto insurance quotes in New Orleans. Let the insurance pros at US Agencies compare your auto, motorcycle, commercial, home, or renters insurance at no cost and receive an affordable auto insurance quote in just a few minutes.  The friendly insurance agents at US Agencies are knowledgable and available to any questions you might have! 


CDW Insurance and Car Rentals – Ireland Forum – TripAdvisor

I am heading to Ireland in August and doing some driving on the WAW among other areas. I am doing my research on car rentals, but the more I read the more confused I am. Many of these 3rd party companies I come across like Holiday Autos are cheaper, but seems like the CDW insurance is not covered? 


3 Steps to Saving on Your 2016 Car Insurance Costs – NewSpindle

3 Steps to Saving on Your 2016 Car Insurance Costs
Car insurance is an inevitable – and often costly – part of almost all American motorists’ budgets. However, it exists to protect motorists from unexpected financial crisis, if they should ever be involved in an accident. There are three simple tips that can help you get your car insurance costs under control (it gets crazy, we know.) 


Car insurance warning ! | Toluna

I just insured my car , and I’m utterly amazed at the disparity in prices . I’ve been with Hastings for 3 years , and got their renewal quote last Friday , and almost fainted with shock . I went on to the comparison websites tonight , with the following results ; Hastings- £327 , Halifax – £212 ! The terms are identical , so I phoned Hastings , ostensibly to see what they could do . Answer ? Nothing , they couldn’t explain the huge increase in price , which is over £100 more than last year . So , bye bye Hastings , hello Halifax ! I know it may seem obvious , but it really does pay to shop around . 

Life Insurance Roundup, January 30, 2016


Product mis-selling top-most complaint in life insurance but shows y-o-y decline | Business Standard News

Mis-selling complaints which dominates the type of grievances in the lifeindustry has seen a reduction in FY15 compared to FY14, said Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority of India (IRDAI) Annual Report 2014-15.

Data showed that unfair business practice complaints, also called mis-selling, constituted the largest class of complaints accounting for 52% of the complaints in life sector during 2014-15. However, they saw a drop as against 56% during 2013-14. This was followed by policy-servicing related complaints, which constituted 20% of the total complaints in the life sector during 2014-15. 


Thunder Bay TV stations surviving on life insurance cash, shutdowns looming | Globalnews.ca

The stations are currently in the red and running on funds from life insurance policies, not revenue, Don Caron, vice president and general manager of Thunder Bay Electronics told a Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (CTRC) panel in Gatineau, Que., Wednesday. 


Samsung Life Insurance to buy stake in Samsung Card

Samsung Life Insurance Co., South Korea’s No. 1 life insurer, said Thursday it will purchase Samsung Electronics Co.’s entire stake in its affiliate Samsung Card as part of the conglomerate’s efforts to streamline ownership.

In a regulatory filing, the insurer announced its decision to purchase the 37.45-percent stake the tech giant has in the credit card firm for 1.54 trillion won (US$1.3 billion) to be its largest shareholder.

Currently, Samsung Life Insurance owns 34.41 percent of shares in Samsung Card.

“The stake purchase is designed to boost synergies between insurance and card businesses,” Samsung Life Insurance said. 


Split-dollar Life Insurance – A Tax-Leveraged Derivative for Hedge Fund Managers | Gerald Nowotny – JDSupra

The Emergency Economic Stabilization Act of 2008 ended the not so discrete secret of hedge fund managers, the deferred compensation arrangement with their offshore funds or as the New York Times described, “an unlimited Super IRA for the super-wealthy.”

As Judge Learned Hand (of blessed memory to tax attorneys) once said: 


Jubilee Life Insurance Company Limited | Business Recorder

As Jubilee Life (PSX:JLICL) and EFU Life battle out for the top spot in private sector life insurance space, there is a clear winner when it comes to the speed of business expansion. The former has been the fastest growing firm in its already rapidly expanding sector in recent years and has come from a long way behind to overtake rival EFUL in terms of net premiums in 2014.  


Thai Life to develop new products, streamline claims process – The Nation

THAI LIFE Insurance will mine all distribution channels, develop products and speed up its claims process to tap the new lifestyles of consumers and achieve its premium-income target of Bt17.30 billion this year.

President Chai Chaiyawan said yesterday that the life-insurance industry was expected to grow by at least 10 per cent this year as targeted customers enjoy higher income from the government’s stimulus packages launched last quarter.

Insurers are also expected to develop new products and services to meet customers’ requirements, making the competition in this industry tough. 


A Short History of Life Settlements | AllAboutAlpha: Hedge Fund Trends & Alternative Investment Analysis | A finance blog about hedge funds, portable alpha and alternative investing.

Andrew N. Smith, CAIA, interviews Doug Himmel of Melville Capital and Adam Meltzer of Vida Capital, both experts in the life settlement industry. 


20,000 Shares in Torchmark Co. (TMK) Acquired by Pensionfund Sabic – Zolmax

Pensionfund Sabic purchased a new position in shares of Torchmark Co. (NYSE:TMK) during the fourth quarter, according to its most recent 13F filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). The institutional investor purchased 20,000 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $1,143,000.

Separately, Janus Capital Management raised its position in shares of Torchmark by 5.8% in the third quarter. Janus Capital Management now owns 793,588 shares of the company’s stock valued at $44,759,000 after buying an additional 43,564 shares in the last quarter. 


ITInews – Insurance Times and Investments Online

Life cover is the simple answer to some difficult questions:

  • How will my family survive if I’m not around to take care of them?
  • How will my spouse settle the debts I leave behind like the mortgage on our home?
  • How will my family pay for daily living expenses, healthcare and education if I am not around?

“Simply put, life cover protects the people who depend on you financially by providing them with an income to replace yours when you die.

“With the help of a professional financial advisor, you can decide how much life cover you need and how to work this into your budget.” 


Virat Kohli to be the face of Delhi Marathon – newkerala.com

DBI Federal Life Insurance will be the Title Sponsor of the inaugural edition of the New Delhi Marathon.

The Marathon will now be called IDBI Federal Life Insurance New Delhi Marathon and will take place in the city on February 28.

Indias Test Cricket captain, Virat Kohli will be the Face of the Event which will see more than 15,000 participants take to the streets on the last Sunday of February.

There are 3 categories to the event 42 km Full Marathon, 21 km Half Marathon, and 5K Swacch Bharat Run that aims to promote the message of a clean and green India. 


Ugandan insurer fits Liberty’s plan | Financial Services | BDlive

JSE-LISTED insurer Liberty Holdings has entered Uganda’s short-term insurance market by acquiring a majority stake in a general insurance group in the country.

The acquisition is part of Liberty’s aggressive acquisition plans in the rest of Africa and expands its short-term insurance offering to three African countries.

Sandile Hlophe, the CE of the Group Arrangements business at Liberty, said the company was also looking to buy consulting businesses in the employee benefits space in SA. 


BRIEF-Samsung Life says to buy back 295 bln won worth of own shares | Reuters

* Says to buy back 295 billion won ($244.74 million) worth of own shares

* Says buying back own shares to boost shareholder value Further company coverage: ($1 = 1,205.3400 won) (Reporting By Se Young Lee) 


Top Life Insurance Law Firms

Explore rates starting your foremost invigoration cover services inside legal representative to take place down spending examination plans upon forgather to own medical cover. Your site was rattling client agreeable and provides quotes which can be launch, instant and also very competitor y. At unpredictable situations suffering from Lawyer Chronicle contract contract might support assuage will say that your mate and also otherwise origin users testament engage because they sight using the modifications.Insurance Coverage center out of Iowa displays certain insurance covers such as Dubuque life insurance, allied Dubuque insurance and/or modern insurance at Dubuque. 


Do I Really Need Life Insurance? – Smathers Insurance Agency, Inc.

Do I Really Need Life Insurance?

Short answer:  Yes, you really need life insurance.  But there are a few circumstances under which it’s absolutely critical that you have life insurance: 


Tapping your own life insurance policy: How it works

A serious illness can take a major toll on your life, including your wallet. But there may be a way to deal with the growing stack of medical bills and other financial pressures: Tap your own life insurance.

Many life insurance policies offer a perk, the accelerated death benefit, that lets terminally ill policyholders get part of their life insurance money early. 


American General Life Insurance Company Helps Customers in the Aftermath of Natural Disasters

We Help Our Customers in the Aftermath of Natural Disasters 


Funding of Insurance Tech Startups Spikes In Q2 2015


Insurance Tech financing of startups spiked in Q2 2015 by 460% year over year. As a result, 2015 was by far the best year ever as such, showing a total increase of over 350% compared to 2014.

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In Q2 2015 the startups raked in a whopping USD 1.8 billion, compared to the Q2 2014 total rake of USD 397 million. Full years compared USD 2.65 billion in 2015 vs USD 740 million in 2014. The two biggest fishes in the Q2 2015 pond were Zenefits and Zhong An.

Also interesting to note is that world wide the number of deals is in an clear upward trend, whereas in the US the number of deals is fluctuating in a more side ways trend.

See also: CB Insights

Health Insurance Roundup, January 29, 2016


Some choosing penalty fees over health insurance as open enrollment deadline nears | News, Weather, Sports, Breaking News | KRNV

In the biggest gambling state in the nation, health insurance is also a game of risk.

“I mean, insurance is a gamble.” Matt Law is an insurance broker at Health Benefits Associates. “It’s based on risk. We don’t know what’s going to happen.”

People who do not yet have insurance for 2016 have just four more days to sign up during the open enrollment period; and the penalty has increased this year for people who go without insurance. 


Health insurance fines loom as deadline nears – 7NEWS Denver TheDenverChannel.com

Sunday is the deadline to sign up for health insurance, or else pay a fine. That fine has gone up, causing even more financial stress on the uninsured and those who choose to opt out of health insurance.

“I just cannot afford it in any way, shape, or form right now,” 27-year-old Seth Valkonen said when talking about health insurance.

Valkonen chooses to be uninsured by paying a one time fine for not having coverage instead of a monthly premium.

“The penalty is cheaper than the overall total for the entire year,” he said,

Already on a tight budget, this year’s fine will hit Valkonen and many young people like him,  even harder. 


Obamacare Deadline: You Need to Buy Health Insurance Before January 31 – TheStreet

With only a few days left until the open enrollment deadline expires on January 31, consumers who have dragged their feet need to choose a health insurance plan or risk not having coverage for a year.

The deadline for consumers to purchase insurance under the Affordable Care Act is January 31, which falls on a Sunday. After then, unless a qualifying life event occurs such as moving to a new state, turning 26 and aging out of your parent’s plan, getting married or divorced or changing income to such an extent that it affects the coverage you qualify for, consumers would need to wait until 2017 to purchase healthcare coverage. 


Uninsured Texans Say Cost Of Health Insurance Is Still Too High

When you don’t have much money, you have to prioritize, and that is a key issue that the wealthy elites who set off on insurance reform forgot to factor in. Massachusetts, which the Federal government claimed was a model for its Affordable Care Act, now has to spend 40 percent of its budget so that 25 percent of people can have even basic health care. That is not sustainable. 


Poll: Most adults actually like their health insurance | Tampa Bay Times

The Kaiser Family Foundation poll revealed that 71 percent of insured adults younger than 65 considered the health care services they receive to be either “excellent” or “good” values. A majority — 61 percent — said their insurance plan was either excellent or good, given its cost.

While many insurance plans are limiting the networks of doctors and hospitals to restrain prices, the survey found that a majority of people didn’t mind. Fifty-four percent of insured adults younger than 65 said they were “very satisfied” with their selection of doctors. Another 34 percent said they were “somewhat satisfied.” Only 12 percent said they had to change doctors because they were not covered by their insurance plan. 


Bevin: $500M health insurance surplus would go to pensions

A massive surplus of $500 million that is anticipated in the Kentucky public employee health insurance fund is part of Gov. Matt Bevin’s plan to restore financial stability to Kentucky’s badly underfunded public pension funds.

Bevin’s budget would transfer the half billion dollars during the 2017-18 fiscal year to a new fund called the Kentucky Permanent Fund.

And State Budget Director John Chilton said Thursday that money in the Kentucky Permanent Fund will be used for pensions. 


State mistake leaves man without health insurance | News, Weather, Sports, Breaking News | WSTM

Thomas Roth is scrambling to make sure he and his family will have health insurance this year.

Roth lost his benefits last April, because the state thought he was in prison.

“I called up Blue Cross and they told me New York State of Health cancelled me because I was incarcerated,” Roth said. 


10 international organisations to provide support to new comprehensive social health insurance system – Daily News Egypt

Ten international organisations of development partners with Egypt declared they would provide all aspects of technical support for the government to support its efforts to speed up implementation of the new comprehensive social health insurance system, according to  First Deputy Minister of Finance for Treasury and head of Economic Justice Unit Mohamed Maait.

There will be a meeting with the representatives of those organisations mid-March to identify areas of support in details. 


A US health insurance provider has lost nearly a million customer records

A US health insurance company, Centene Corporation, has admitted that it has lost six hard drives that contained the records of around 950,000 people.

Personal information such as customer names, addresses, social security numbers, health information and dates of birth are amongst the pieces of data that have been lost. The company says that there is no financial or payment information contained on these drives. The data that were lost related to people who received laboratory service between 2009 and 2015.

The company’s chief executive, Michael Neirdorff, released a statement regarding the data loss, in which he said: 


Dejargoned: Top-up health insurance plan – Livemint

The most common mistake when buying a health insurance policy is settling for a small cover, which may be enough to fund small hospitalisation costs, but not a serious case. So, it’s important you buy adequate insurance. But doing that can also mean paying a higher premium, which may not be affordable for some. For such individuals, a health cover top-up plan is a good way to increase the cover while keeping costs in check. 


Health Insurance Options simplifies the complex – The Union-Recorder: News

Health Insurance Options does exactly what the name suggests and shows consumers their options when it comes to insurance plans.

“I actually started working for a title insurance company in Maryland then transferred to the health insurance industry in 2009,” said Debbie Fry, owner. “I started in customer service and then worked my way into sales.” 


Sunday is deadline to sign up for health insurance or tax penalty looms | Fresno Bee

Sunday is the last day to sign up for health insurance for 2016 through Covered California, the state’s insurance marketplace that was established under the Affordable Care Act.

Californians who do not have health insurance by the Jan. 31 deadline will face a penalty of 2.5 percent of annual household income, or $695 per adult and up to $2,085 per family, whichever is higher.

Central San Joaquin Valley residents can get help signing up for insurance plans from several certified insurance agents. Agents can be found on the Covered California website. Help also is available by calling the Covered California Service Center at 800-300-1506. The service center will be open from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. Friday and from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. Saturday and Sunday. 


Time’s up: ACA health insurance deadline is Sunday

This weekend is the last chance to get health insurance on the Obamacare exchange for 2016.

Open enrollment for health insurance sold on the federally run exchange ends on Sunday — and Sandy Dimick of Family and Children’s Service is preparing for a busy weekend. 


Health insurance deadline looms | News | sanfordherald.com

Those who don’t obtain health insurance by Sunday’s deadline could face larger penalties this year than in years past under the Affordable Care Act.

The Open Enrollment period — during which customers can sign up for new coverage through either the government-regulated online marketplace or through third-party insurers — ends Sunday. Purchasing insurance for 2016 after this date will not be possible unless a customer has a qualifying life event, such as a divorce, marriage, job loss or relocation, according to Kathy Norman, an individual advisor with Digital Benefit Advisors in Sanford. 


eHealth Explains How to Get Health Insurance Beyond Open Enrollment After Federal Government Tightens Obamacare Requirements | Benzinga

Today eHealth, Inc. EHTH owns eHealth.com, the nation’s first and largest private health insurance exchange where individuals, families and small businesses can compare health insurance products from leading insurers side by side and purchase and enroll in coverage online. eHealth offers thousands of individual, family and small business health plans underwritten by many of the nation’s leading health insurance companies. eHealth (through its subsidiaries) is licensed to sell health insurance in all 50 states and the District of Columbia. eHealth also offers educational resources and powerful online and pharmacy-based tools to help Medicare beneficiaries navigate Medicare health insurance options, choose the right plan and enroll in select plans online through PlanPrescriber.com (www.PlanPrescriber.com), eHealthMedicare.com (www.eHealthMedicare.com) and Medicare.com (www.Medicare.com). 


National Health Insurance for South Africa – Lexology

On 11 December 2015, the Minister of Health published a White Paper on national health insurance (NHI). This White Paper describes NHI as a “health financing system that is designed to pool funds to provide access to quality, affordable personal health service for all South Africans”.

This note is the first in a series dealing with the proposed policy on national health insurance in South Africa. It describes the legislative procedure followed by government in enacting legislation and gives some background on the terms such as a “Green Paper”, a ‘White Paper” and a bill. This will enable members of the life sciences industry to plan their future strategies accordingly. 


Health Insurance Increases Have Huge Impact on Madison…

The Madison Board of Education proposed budget for fiscal 2016-17 is all about the issue of health insurance.

The $55.78 million spending plan includes a $1.96 million or a 3.65 percent hike over this year’s approved budget, which runs through June 30.

But of the 3.65 percent increase, a whopping 2.47 percent of that figure is solely due to staggering health insurance increases, the Madison Source reports. 


Alaska kicks Moda Health out of individual insurance market, leaving only Premera | Alaska Dispatch News

The Alaska Division of Insurance announced Thursday that it is forcing Portland-based health insurer Moda Health out of the state’s individual marketplace for now, leaving Alaskans with only one choice for coverage: Premera Blue Cross Blue Shield.

Lori Wing-Heier, the division’s director, said in a statement Thursday afternoon that staff has been closely monitoring Moda’s financial status and consumer complaints, determining that Moda has inadequate capital to operate in Alaska in 2016. 


Car Insurance Roundup, January 29, 2016


Liberals urge patience with 15 per cent car insurance cut: Mayers | Toronto Star

Back in 2013, when Ontario’s wobbly Liberal minority government promised to cut car insurance by 15 per cent within two years, the province’s 8.5 million drivers sat up and took note.

Finally, the prospect of relief from the highest car insurance costs in Canada. In the GTA, according to the Insurance Bureau of Canada, they are the highest of the high, at about $1,600 per car, around double what it costs in Quebec and the Maritimes. 


5 Insurance Questions To Ask Before You Buy A Car – Forbes

Auto insurance is often an afterthought for people buying cars. After all, choosing the right vehicle and negotiating a good deal can take substantial time and research. You may think the only insurance question to ask is, “How much will it cost to insure this thing?” But asking a few more questions can help you head off unpleasant financial surprises.

Here are five questions to ask. 


Compulsory car insurance rates will decrease as of March – Latest News Briefs – Arutz Sheva

The reduction compulsory car insurance prices for private cars will be implemented on March 1st.

Finance Minister Moshe Kahlon and Supervisor of Capital Markets, Insurance and Savings Dorit Salinger, declared last November that compulsory car insurance rates for private cars would be reduced. As a first step in the reform’s implementation, one will be able to purchase insurance policies at the newly reduced rates as of February 1st, 2016. 


3 Steps to Saving on Your 2016 Car Insurance Costs

Car insurance is an inevitable – and often costly – part of almost all American motorists’ budgets. However, it exists to protect motorists from unexpected financial crisis, if they should ever be involved in an accident. There are three simple tips that can help you get your car insurance costs under control (it gets crazy, we know.) 


The Zebra, A “Kayak For Auto Insurance,” Grabs $17 Million To Better Educate Drivers About Rates & Coverage | TechCrunch

Austin-based The Zebra, a startup that’s something of a “Kayak for auto insurance,” has been working to bring the process of shopping for insurance online, where consumers can more transparently compare quotes and understand how insurance companies determine rates. Now the company has raised an additional $17 million in Series A funding led by Ballast Point Ventures. 


The End Of Automobile Insurance As We Know It – Gas 2

Volvo says it wants “death proof” cars by 2020. Elon Musk says autonomous cars could be safer than human drivers within a few years. Some people even imagine there will come a time when human drivers are banned because computer controlled cars will be so much safer. If any of that is true, what will happen to the auto insurance industry? 


Why a speed awareness course could hike up your insurance premiums | Money | The Guardian

Most drivers realise that if you get caught speeding, you are going to be punished. In the UK, motorists committing minor offences for the first time have a choice: instead of a three-point penalty and a £100 fine they can opt to attend a speed awareness course.

Most police forces offer a course to drivers who are caught speeding between 10% plus 2 and 10% plus 9 of the legal limit. In other words, if you get caught driving between 35mph and 42mph in a 30mph zone, or between 79mph and 86mph in a 70mph zone. 


Comparethemarket set for £1bn stock market float – Telegraph

The parent company of price comparison website Comparethemarket is preparing to join the stock market, a decade after it was founded by a South African insurer.

BGL Group, which owns Comparethemarket, has hired advisers at Rothschild to sound out bankers and investors about a possible float.

BGL, whose popular website is best known for its abundant advertising campaigns featuring animated meerkats, posted a 6.8pc rise in profits to £94m for 2014, and is set to post its latest results in March. 


Why we need action to keep drivers legal on car cover – Independent.ie

We know motorists are being quoted outrageous figures for car insurance. If I’m getting so many calls and complaints from frustrated car owners you can imagine what it must be like on the ground for thousands renewing their cover for another year.

It’s alright to highlight the crisis (that is now what it is for many) but we also have to ask two simple questions: 


High Deductiblitis | Healthy Families – KY3.com

After 2015’s open enrollment, a lot of people are finding themselves with a high deductible health insurance plan because of rising premiums; or worse, they were not able to even afford a high deductible plan. This has left people with the realization that regardless of whether or not they have any insurance, they will have to pay cash for a majority of their primary care. This may cause people to seek care much less frequently than they already do. With urgent care and emergency room visits costing hundreds to thousands of dollars, who can blame them? 


Do you know your car dashboard warning lights? | Be Wiser Insurance

A car dashboard wouldn’t be complete without a huge number of warning lights, symbols and icons scattered across it. Some warn us of dangerous faults or potential damage, while others are merely let us know that we’ve left our lights on or that the parking sensors are active. But do you know which is which?

The number of multi-coloured lights and icons on new car dashboards has reached Christmas tree proportions in recent times. As cars are filled with more and more gadgets and electronic assistance features, many of the more recent additions to the array of icons and warning symbols might be a little unfamiliar to the uninitiated. Any uncertainty can quickly be resolved by a glance through the car owner’s manual but there is still a tendency to ignore warning lights we’re unsure of in the hope that they’ll just go away. 


Trial for man charged with dangerous driving causing death of tod / Sunday World

A DUBLIN man accused of dangerous driving causing the death of a toddler who suffered serious injuries during an incident in Phoenix Park has been sent forward for trial.

Venessa Siatka, who was 23 months old, was allegedly hit by a car at the Ratra Triangle in the Phoenix Park on April 6 last. She died in the early hours of the following morning at Temple Street Hospital. 


Cheers to safer drivers | The Pueblo Chieftain

Last year, the city experienced only four traffic deaths. The last time Pueblo even came close to that number was more than a decade ago when five people died on the city’s roads in 2005.

By further comparison, the city experienced nine traffic deaths in 2014, six in 2013 and 13 in 2012. 


Data privacy becomes a key issue for many in Shanghai – Global Times

Today is Data Privacy Day (in Europe it is known as Data Protection Day), an international day set for January 28 and intended to increase awareness of privacy and data protection issues for consumers, organizations, and government officials.

Data in the “information age” is increasingly difficult to protect. When someone buys a home nowadays within a very short time interior decorating firms are contacting the new buyer.

Car insurance firms seem to know exactly when someone buys a new car. Purchase an airline ticket online and a deluge of offers from hotels and travel agencies floods in. 


Life Insurance Roundup, January 29, 2016


The Hows And Whys Of Life Insurance For Children – Forbes

The question of whether to buy life insurance for children sparks strong debate about the value of such policies.

Life insurance for children is often marketed to parents or grandparents as a way to save money for kids and to “protect their insurability,” meaning their chance to buy more life insurance later no matter their health. For these reasons, some life insurance agents say purchasing life insurance on a child can be a smart financial move, but many financial advisors caution against it.

“I struggle with thinking of reasons why it would make sense,” says Joseph Alfonso, a financial advisor in the San Francisco and Portland, Oregon, areas. 


Addiction Advertising wins pitch for China Life Insurance Singapore’s branding debut – Campaign Asia


Kotak Life Insurance launches new product in UP | Business Standard News

The plan is a limited premium payment and a participating whole-life plan, which can be used for income benefits or create a tax-free corpus.

“It provides the customer with the option to protect up to 99 years of age,” company’s chief distribution officer and senior executive vice president Suresh Agarwal said here.

The plan offers discounts on premium for higher sum assured on maturity, besides additional discount on the lives of women insured. It allows to partly encash accumulated corpus during the policy term. 


Fitch: Chile Non-Life Insurance Outlook Stable | Business Wire

Fitch Rating comments in a new report on the stable outlook for non-life insurance in Chile, reflecting the higher probability of ratings affirmations during 2016.

The sector’s outlook is stable despite persistence of the country’s limited economic performance in the short term, reflecting the maturity and operational flexibility of the non-life insurance industry. Premiums growth should continue to be low during 2016, driven mainly by the expected slow performance of the Chilean economy and its effect on containing private investment and private consumption. 


Fitch: Chile Life Insurance Outlook Stable | Business Wire

The outlook for life insurance companies in Chile is stable, both in terms of ratings and operational framework, according to a new Fitch Ratings report.

Fitch believes that the life insurance industry in Chile has been resilient to economic weakness, reflecting a mature stage, and has benefited from favorable social development and social mobility environment in the recent years. Gross written premiums forecast for 2016 will be significantly smaller than 2015, mainly driven by the expected lower dynamism of annuities business compared with an overstimulated 2015. 


How to Make a Life Insurance Claim – NerdWallet

If you’re the beneficiary of a life insurance policy, you might think a check will arrive in the mail after the insured person dies. But you need to be proactive to get your payout.

Life insurance companies pay out more than $60 billion to Americans each year, but many policies go unclaimed. Here’s how you can make a life insurance claim. 


What Is the Buzz Surrounding China Life Insurance Company Limited (NYSE:LFC)? – Vanguard Tribune

China Life Insurance Company Limited (NYSE:LFC) has made place in the list of notable movers in today’s trading day, where it started the session at 11.84 and was last noted trading at 11.83. In the current trading session, the share price moved up on the chart to make a high of 12.05 while low was 11.77. The market cap of China Life Insurance Company Li, a NYQ listed entity, stands at 61.73B. The average volume recorded in last three months stands at 584810 shares. 


What does the insurance industry expect from Budget 2016? – Moneycontrol.com

Insurance companies hope the finance minister will be more generous in Budget 2016, than he was last year. And while tax exemptions remain their biggest priority, this year’s wish list includes more measures to support and promote the government’s pet insurance schemes.   India has immense potential as an insurance market. But it needs some serious support from the government if that potential is to be achieved, starting with more tax incentives for buying personal insurance policies. That’s the crux of the insurance sector’s wish list for Budget 2016. 


Press Release: Financial Planning Practice Valuations Impacted by Life Insurance Commission Reforms and FOFA

The recent Life Insurance Commission reforms, in addition to the ongoing impact of FOFA, have impacted financial planning and wealth management practice valuations over the last 5 years.  However, calendar year 2015 also saw increased transaction activity for the buying and selling of financial planning businesses, compared with calendar 2014, which resulted in some small increases at the upper end of the Multiple Range for some assets. 


We’re looking at acquisition opportunities: Rajesh Sud | Business Standard News

Private life insurer Max Life Insurance, whose holding company Max Financial Services is set to become the first listed life insurance firm, is looking to create more value and acquisition opportunities in the life insurance space.Rajesh Sud, managing director and CEO, talks to M Saraswathy about the firm’s strategy. Edited excerpts: 


FINCHANNEL.com – Vienna Insurance posts 1.5 pct fall in 2015 gross premiums

The decrease in total unconsolidated direct premiums written (-1.5 percent) to around EUR 9.2 billion was primarily due to the ongoing low level of interest rates and the resulting restraint being exercised with respect to sales of single-premium life insurance products. The extensive regional diversification of the Group in the CEE region again proved to be strategically important, as shown by the dynamic growth of roughly 10 percent once again achieved by the countries in the “Remaining Markets”, according to Vienna Insurance Group. 


Azerbaijan’s insurance market improves a little pay balance: 3 of 27 insurers have negative premium/compensation ratio – ABC.AZ

The payment imbalance concerns less and less the insurance market of Azerbaijan: in 2015 three out of the 27 insurers had negative balance between premiums/compensations. Over the last few months the imbalance was observed even on six companies.

According to statistical data published by the State Insurance Supervision Service under the Ministry of Finance, by 1 January 2016 the insurance market trends remained unchanged in the rest. For Jan-Dec 2015 the average premium per an insurance company exceeded AZN 16.4 million (against AZN 15.327 million in 2014) and compensation payment AZN 6.675 million  (against AZN 5.61 million respectively). The median level on premiums for 2015 was exceeded only by 11 companies and on compensations by 10 companies. 


Hottest Asian Stocks Now: China Life Insurance Co. Ltd. (LFC), United Microelectronics Corporation (UMC), Bitauto Holdings Limited (BITA) | iStreetWire – Stock Market News, Trading Ideas & Financial Analysis

China Life Insurance Co. Ltd. (LFC) ended last trading session with a change of -1.89 percent. It trades at an average volume of 577.27K shares versus 1054686 shares recorded at the end of last trading session. The share price of $11.97 is at a distance of -1.32 percent from its 52-week low and down -54.47 percent versus its peak. The company has a market cap of $84.79B and currently has 7.08B shares outstanding. The share price is currently -16.25 percent versus its SMA20, -25.15 percent versus its SMA50, and -38.12 percent versus its SMA200. The stock has a weekly performance of -8.63 percent and is -25.14 percent year-to-date as of the recent close. 


Sumitomo Life wins regulatory approvals to complete $3.8bn Symetra acquisition – Insurance Business Review

Sumitomo Life Insurance has secured all regulatory approvals in the US and Japan to complete the acquisition of insurance firm Symetra Financial, for around $3.8bn. The deal was first announced by both firms in last August.

Subject to customary closing conditions, the firms intend to close the merger deal on 1 February. 


Gartner Positions CSC in the ‘Leaders’ Quadrant of the 2015 Magic Quadrant for Life Insurance Policy Administration Systems, Europe | Business Wire

CSC (NYSE: CSC), a leading provider of next-generation technology solutions and services, today announced it has been positioned by Gartner, Inc. in the “Leaders” quadrant of the “Magic Quadrant for European Life Insurance Policy Administration Systems.” 


A.M. Best Affirms Ratings of Subsidiaries of CUNA Mutual Holding Company | Business Wire

A.M. Best has affirmed the financial strength ratings of A (Excellent) and the issuer credit ratings (ICR) of “a” of CMFG Life Insurance Company (CMFG Life), the lead life and annuity insurance writer, and MEMBERS Life Insurance Company (Members Life), a life/annuity subsidiary, as well as CUMIS Insurance Society, Inc. (CUMIS), the lead property/casualty writer, and CUMIS Specialty Insurance Company, Inc. (CUMIS Specialty), a property/casualty subsidiary. Concurrently, A.M. Best has affirmed the ICR of “bbb” of CUNA Mutual Financial Group, Inc., an intermediate holding company within the group. Additionally, A.M. Best has affirmed the issue rating of “bbb+” on the $85 million, 8.5% surplus notes issued by CMFG Life due 2030. The outlook for all ratings is stable. The ultimate parent for all companies isCUNA Mutual Holding Company. All operating companies are domiciled in Waverly, IA, but are headquartered in Madison, WI. 


China’s Insurance Stocks Worth the Risk After Selloff

Life insurance companies should be a staple in any China portfolio given their exposure to the nation’s increasingly wealthy middle class. Not only are they solid blue chip names, they’re also looking cheap after the selloff of Chinese stocks.

After bouncing back from last summer’s lows, the Hong Kong-listed shares of China’s top insurance stocks have tanked again since the start of the year. Ping An Insurance Company (2318.HK) is down 20% year-to-date, while China Life Insurance (2628.HK) has lost 28% and China Pacific Insurance (2601.HK) has shed 21%. 


AIG selling broker-dealer segment, cutting expenses – The Boston Globe

The insurance giant American International Group on Tuesday announced a series of changes designed to streamline its sprawling operations, but it stopped short of acceding to demands that it break up.

The company said it would spin off 19.9 percent of United Guaranty, its mortgage guaranty business; sell its financial advisory business; and create nine distinct operating units in its commercial and consumer divisions. The moves are intended to shore up financial performance and give AIG the flexibility to separate or sell businesses down the road. 


A.M. Best Upgrades Issuer Credit Ratings of Assurant, Inc. and Its Property/Casualty Subsidiaries | Business Wire

A.M. Best has upgraded the issuer credit ratings (ICR) to “a+” from “a” and affirmed the financial strength rating (FSR) of A (Excellent) of the U.S. property/casualty subsidiaries of Assurant, Inc. (Assurant) (headquartered in New York, NY) [NYSE: AIZ]. Additionally, A.M. Best has upgraded the ICR to “bbb+” from “bbb” and the issue ratings of Assurant. The outlook for the ICR of the property/casualty subsidiaries, the holding company and the issue ratings has been revised to stable from positive, while the outlook for the FSR of the property/casualty subsidiaries remains stable.


Health Insurance Roundup, January 28, 2016


Do-It-Yourselfers Face Penalties Over Their Cut-Rate Health Insurance : Shots – Health News : NPR

Last fall, Shalonda Brown decided she’d had it with paying nearly $1,000 a month for family health, dental and vision plans through her job at an independent lab in Dallas.

Casting about for an alternative, she checked out individual family plans on HealthCare.gov. No dice. The family’s income was too high to qualify for subsidies and comparable coverage wouldn’t be any cheaper. 


Health insurance market maintained double digit growth last fiscal year – The Hindu

The health insurance segment in the country continues to witness steady growth on the back of growing healthcare costs and increasing penetration levels with total premium collection growing 15 per cent in 2014-15 year-on-year. During 2014-15, the gross health insurance premium collected by non-life insurance companies was Rs.20,096 crore compared with Rs.17,495 crore in 2013-14, recording an increase of 14.87 per cent, according to the latest annual report of IRDAI (Insurance Regulatory & Development Authority of India). 


WPS and Aspirus form health insurance company | Local News | host.madison.com

Monona-based WPS Health Solutions and Wausau-based Aspirus health system are creating a health insurance company in north-central Wisconsin.

Aspirus Arise Health Plan of Wisconsin, known publicly as Aspirus Arise, will sell individual marketplace, small group, large group and self-funded plans in 16 counties, pending approval from the Wisconsin Office of the Commissioner of Insurance and other regulatory agencies.

Arise Health Plan, based in De Pere, is part of WPS. Aspirus has four hospitals in Wisconsin and four hospitals in Michigan, along with 50 clinics, home health care, hospice care and other services. 


Feds, Florida battle over “health insurance marketplace” slogan | jacksonville.com

Florida’s fledgling health exchange, Florida Health Choices, has always accused the federal Affordable Care Act’s insurance exchange of stealing its thunder. The two exchanges operate in similar fashion but have different origins and offer very different services.

Florida Health Choices is the brainchild of U.S. Sen. and then-Florida House Speaker Marco Rubio, and it has the backing of conservative lawmakers. Right now, the state-based site allows individuals to purchase comprehensive insurance coverage. (UPDATE: This paragraph was corrected to reflect current offerings.) The state exchange has struggled to attract customers. 


January 31 Health Insurance Deadline Looms

“Most importantly I need a proof of income. I need an accurate estimation of income, and I need Social Security numbers for everybody that is enrolled,” says Alex Sampson with Health Benefits Associates.

Sampson has been signing people during the registration period which began in November 2015. He says unlike in years past with the federal site, the process has been pretty easy this year for his clients. 


Nevada’s health insurance exchange nears 80,000 enrollees | Las Vegas Review-Journal

With four days left in the sign-up period, Nevada’s health insurance exchange is closing in on 80,000 customers.

Nevada Health Link had enrolled 79,055 people by Saturday, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services said Wednesday.

The sign-ups include automatic renewals from 2015, though the federal government didn’t break down numbers by existing versus new enrollments.

With three days left until the Jan. 31 enrollment deadline, Nevada Health Link has already bested the 72,000 sign-ups it had a year ago. 


Health insurance deadline looms large

Gypsi Pate had a pre-existing condition, sports injuries, when she started searching for a new insurance policy. She says she was stressed about finding a plan she could afford. Back in the day, Pate loved roller derby…until she was flipped airborne during practice.
The injuries caused chronic pain and ultimately Pate’s roller derby retirement. Dealing with chronic pain became even more stressful when Pate lost her health insurance. 


Mid-Missouri organizations to host health insurance sign-up event | Local | columbiamissourian.com

Several mid-Missouri organizations are partnering for an event Sunday to help people understand their health insurance options under the Affordable Care Act. The deadline for open enrollment is the same day.

Primaris Foundation and the Cover Missouri Coalition will host the free event from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. at Primaris’ offices at 200 N. Keene St. in Columbia. Counselors from Primaris, as well as volunteers from Central Missouri Community Action, the Family Health Center, Planned Parenthood of Kansas and Mid-Missouri, and the Central Missouri Area Agency on Aging will be on hand, according to a news release. 


Dependents urged to get health insurance as deadline nears | GulfNews.com

With the deadline for the final roll-out of mandatory insurance ticking away in Dubai, top officials of the Dubai Health Authority (DHA) have urged the public to put their medical insurance policies in place or run the risk of being penalised for violating the law.

In the current third and last phase, the mandatory insurance scheme, which links visa applications to medical insurance, requires companies with less than 100 employees and individuals, including spouses, dependent parents and children, and domestic workers to get covered by June 30. From July 1, anyone applying for a new visa or visa renewal must be able to demonstrate that they are covered by medical insurance by presenting a medical certificate from the insurance company. 


Cruz control: GOP candidate fesses up to having health insurance | Healthcare Dive

Prior to Blue Cross, Cruz and his family had health insurance through his wife’s employer, Goldman Sachs. However, that policy was suspended in March 2015 when she went on leave to focus on her husband’s campaign. 


Liberty Tax Provides One-Stop Option for Health Insurance, Taxes

Open enrollment in the health insurance Marketplace ends Sunday, just as tax season is ramping up. Those two realities make Liberty Tax, a leading international tax franchise, the perfect one-stop option for consumers looking to enroll in health insurance coverage by the January 31 deadline as they can have their taxes professionally prepared at the same time.

“We have made it easy for consumers to manage these two yearly obligations in one location,” said Chuck Lovelace, Vice President of the Affordable Care Act for Liberty Tax. “Now, with the health insurance deadline approaching, it makes even more sense for consumers to choose Liberty Tax.” 


County Takes $500K Hit From Large Health Insurance Claims – The Greeneville Sun: Local News

There was nothing that could have been done, according to Chris Poynter with Trinity Benefit Advisors, Greene County’s insurance broker.

The county’s insurance fund took a hit from a number of large claims during December, Poynter told officials at Tuesday’s meeting of the Greene County Insurance Committee.

“It’s not anything that doing a better job on wellness or any of that stuff would’ve changed,” Poynter said. 


HealthyCT, Connecticut’s Non-Profit Health Insurance CO-OP, Selects QualMetrix, Inc. as Its Healthcare Analytics Partner | Business Wire

HealthyCT has chosen QualMetrix as its healthcare analytics partner. QualMetrix delivers actionable insights to payors, providers and employers to help them reduce cost while enhancing the quality of healthcare for their respective members, patients and employees. 


State mistake leaves man without health insurance | News, Weather, Sports, Breaking News | WHAM

Thomas Roth is scrambling to make sure he and his family will have health insurance this year.

Roth lost his benefits last April, because the state thought he was in prison.

“I called up Blue Cross and they told me New York State of Health cancelled me because I was incarcerated,” Roth said. 


Partnership guides would-be patients through health insurance maze | Clay Today

Last year, a major stint of bronchitis landed Marisol Kashmiri in the hospital but she did not have health insurance. While she was recovering, a woman approached her about signing up for health coverage, but Kashmiri did not think it would be affordable.

Kashmiri, 52, lost year job as a real estate broker last year but lived without health insurance for six years even though she suffers from asthma. 


Govt prepares to launch new version of health insurance scheme covering 50 crore people

The Health Ministry is preparing to introduce an expanded version of the Rashtriya Swasthya Bima Yojana (RSBY), the government’s flagship health insurance scheme, covering more than 10 crore families or about 50 crore people, reports a daily newspaper.

The plans come a year after the Ministry of Health got the administrative responsibility for RSBY from the Ministry of Labour, which launched it in 2008. The expanded scheme will be the first step towards universal health insurance, though the final modalities and the name of the scheme are still a work in progress. 


Rochester radiologist sentenced for defrauding health insurance programs | News, Weather, Sports, Breaking News | WHAM

A local radiologist has been sentenced for defrauding health insurance programs.

U.S. Attorney William J. Hochul announced Wednesday that Thomas Stephenson, MD, of Rochester has been sentenced to one year probation and ordered to perform 200 hours of community service for committing health care fraud.

Stephenson was also fined $25,000.

Assistant U.S. Attorney John Field, who handled the case, stated that Stephenson owned and operated Westside Imaging in Rochester. 


US health insurer Centene loses 950,000 people’s records – BBC News

The medical records of nearly a million people have gone missing, a US health insurance company has admitted.

Centene Corporation said it was conducting an internal search for six hard drives containing the information.

Customers’ names, addresses and dates of birth were included, as well as their social security numbers, membership details and health information, Centene said.

But no financial or payment details of customers were on the drives, it said. 


NunatsiaqOnline 2016-01-27: LETTERS: QIA should develop supplementary health insurance for Inuit

I’m writing to you today to request that the Qikiqtani Inuit Association board consider developing and approving a supplementary insurance program for Baffin Inuit.

I believe that if QIA approved such a program, the quality of life for Inuit in the Baffin region would be enhanced greatly, and also, it would reflect on the QIA and board as a proactive and visionary organization.

As an Inuk from the Baffin region who has dealt with the Non-Insured Health Benefits program all my life, I am quite aware of the shortcomings of the NIHB program, which is to provide eligible Inuit with a specified range of medically necessary health-related goods and services when they are not covered through private insurance plans or provincial-territorial health and social programs. 


Milennials face tough choice between buying health insurance or paying fine – THonline.com: National/World

Millions of young adults healthy enough to think they don’t need insurance face painful choices this year as the sign-up deadline approaches for President Barack Obama’s health care law.

Fines for being uninsured rise sharply in 2016 — averaging nearly $1,000 per household, according to an independent estimate. It’s forcing those in their 20s and 30s to take a hard look and see if they can squeeze in coverage to avoid penalties. Many are trying to establish careers or just make progress in a still-bumpy economy.

“There’s only so far one can dwindle a ramen-noodle diet,” said Christopher Rael, of Los Angeles. In his late 20s, Rael is pursuing a degree in sociology and working at a children’s center to pay his bills. 


Health Insurance Roundup, January 27, 2016


Warning: Trying To Disrupt Health Insurance May Cause Headaches

Like most of us, Sarah Doody dreaded interacting with her health insurance provider. So the New York-based product designer decided to take a chance in 2014 on a startup called Oscar Health, which bills itself as “revolutionizing health insurance.”

That messaging appealed to Doody, who works in the tech industry, as she could easily peruse information on Oscar’s mobile app and website, and call anytime to speak to the customer experience team. Her monthly premiums for a bronze plan set her back a modest $350 per month, which is only slightly above average in New York. 


Apollo Hospitals to divest 23.3 pc in health insurance business – The Hindu

Apollo Energy Company Ltd, an Apollo Hospitals Group company, will divest 23.3 per cent shareholding in Apollo Munich Health Insurance Company Ltd. to its joint venture partner Munich Re of Germany for Rs.163.5 crore.

This was approved by the Board of Apollo Energy at a meeting held on Monday, an announcement by the company said. The proposed transaction values Apollo Munich at Rs.703 crore.

Post the transaction, which is expected to be completed by end of the first quarter of 2016, Apollo Hospitals Group’s shareholding in Apollo Munich would be 51.1 per cent. Consequently, Munich Re’s shareholding in the health insurance JV would move to 48.7 per cent and 0.2 per cent will be held by employees. 


Retirement Giant Fidelity Now Wants Workers’ Health Insurance – Bloomberg Business

Fidelity Investments is already the U.S.’s No. 2 mutual fund company. Now, it wants to get bigger in the health insurance business.

The financial services firm is introducing a shopping website for health insurance and other employee benefits called Fidelity Health Marketplace. Targeted at businesses with as many as 2,500 workers, the site, known as a private health exchange, complements Fidelity’s existing benefits products such as retirement accounts.

“The bottom line is, our customers are asking for this,” Joe Laurin, who runs the health marketplace business at Fidelity, said in a telephone interview. “The real distinguishing point is this ability to bring the health and financial wellness together.” 


The Angelina Jolie benefit added to Southern Cross health insurance policies | Stuff.co.nz

The country’s largest health insurer Southern Cross is changing its policies to cover preventative treatments like the double mastectomy undergone by actress Angelina Jolie.

Jolie had both breasts removed in 2013 after genetic testing showed she had a high chance of developing breast cancer. In 2015, she also had her ovaries removed. 


Govt sets out to widen health insurance scheme to 50 crore people | The Indian Express

The Ministry of Health is preparing to roll out an expanded version of the Rashtriya Swasthya Bima Yojana, the government’s flagship health insurance scheme, covering more than 10 crore families or about 50 crore people. The plans come a year after the health ministry got the administrative responsibility for RSBY from the Ministry of Labour, which launched it in 2008. The expanded scheme will be the first step towards universal health insurance, though the final modalities and the name of the scheme are still a work in progress. 


Health insurance enrollment deadline looms Sunday – San Antonio Express-News

This weekend marks the last chance most U.S. consumers will have to get health insurance coverage this year.

Those who don’t purchase coverage will face steep fines next year for not complying with the Affordable Care Act unless they qualify for an exemption.

Once Sunday’s open enrollment deadline has passed, shoppers will no longer be able to purchase coverage for the rest of the year through the federal and state-run health insurance exchanges or directly from health insurance companies or brokers unless there are mitigating circumstances that qualify for a special enrollment period. 


Yoga powers its way into health insurance wellness packages of ICICI Lombard, Bajaj Allianz and others – The Economic Times

The buzz around Yoga seems to have struck a chord with health insurers. The growing popularity of this ancient form of exercise has prompted general insurers such as ICICI Lombard, Bajaj Allianz and Royal Sundaram to incorporate it in their wellness and preventive healthcare benefit packages.

While the trend is more prevalent in the employees’ group health insurance schemes, some insurers are now planning to extend it to their retail health policies too. 


Emirates ID replaces health insurance, ATM cards; driving licence next? – Emirates 24|7

The Emirates Identity Authority (Eida) is ready to provide all the necessary support to government and private institutions that want to replace their cards with the ID card, it said in a statement emailed to Emirates 24|7.

“We confirm our readiness to provide the necessary support to those wishing to take advantage of the potential available in the identity card.

The ID card’s smart chip can bind customers’ records by ID number or upload basic data of cardholder field storage allocated by the authority for this purpose, all within the chip,” the authority said.

The response came following a query from this website on when the ID card will replace driving licences. 


Doctors’ Syndicate threatens legal action if health insurance bill passes unamended – Daily News Egypt

In a press conference, the Doctors’ Syndicate revealed a set of recommendations. regarding the new health insurance bill and another training institution for doctors.

Ehab Al-Taher, the syndicate chief, said during the conference: “We refuse the newly suggested health insurance bill as it has substantial flaws that threaten the wellbeing of citizens, medical staff and the entire healthcare system.”

“In case it is passed as is, without implementing the amendments which aim to ensure an adequate healthcare system for all citizens, a lawsuit will be filed against its constituency.”

In his announcement, Al-Taher called on the sub-syndicate members in different governorates to share the syndicate’s concerns on the new bill with the parliamentary members in their cities, ahead of the parliamentary review. 


Buy health insurance early, get price benefit – Livemint

The Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority of India (Irdai) released a draft exposure on health insurance regulations on 19 January 2016, seeking to make minor changes to the existing health insurance regulations of 2013. The draft is a result of the recommendations of the insurance committee that was constituted in December 2014 to examine health insurance framework. One of the key recommendations of the committee was to introduce entry age-based pricing. This means a first-time buyer of health insurance would be charged more than a person of the same age who had bought health insurance earlier and is only renewing the policy. According to the report, the price differentiation can significantly impact penetration at the market level, and create a structural pull for persistency. 


Millennials at Cal State Long Beach mull whether to get health insurance, or pay fines

Millions of young adults healthy enough to think they don’t need insurance face painful choices this year as the sign-up deadline approaches for President Barack Obama’s health care law.

Fines for being uninsured rise sharply in 2016 — averaging nearly $1,000 per household, according to an independent estimate. It’s forcing those in their 20s and 30s to take a hard look and see if they can squeeze in coverage to avoid penalties. Many are trying to establish careers or just make progress in a still-bumpy economy.

“There’s only so far one can dwindle a ramen-noodle diet,” said Christopher Rael, a student at Cal State Long Beach. In his late 20s, Rael is pursuing a degree in sociology and working at a children’s center to pay his bills. 


Matt Pommer: Walker’s health insurance idea stirs debate | GazetteXtra

Gov. Scott Walker is tip-toeing through a political mine field as he floats the idea of changing the health insurance program for state employees.

State workers now select from several insurance options, many of them connected with regional Health Maintenance Organization (HMOs) that include hospitals and groups of physicians.

State workers and their family members, some 250,000 people, obtain health care through the program. They are among the 1.5 million Wisconsin residents covered by the 18 regional plans. 


JAMA | Marriage Equality Act and Changes to Health Insurance Coverage—ReplyMarriage Equality Act and Changes to Health Insurance CoverageLetters

In Reply Dr Long is concerned about the measurement of same-sex couples in the ACS. Sexual orientation is not directly ascertained in the ACS. Same-sex couples are identified when the primary respondent identifies a cohabiting person in the household of the same sex as a husband, wife or unmarried partner, missing single LGB adults, same-sex couples not cohabiting together, and same-sex couples choosing not to disclose their relationship, which may bias the results. The findings should not be generalized to all LGB adults or same-sex couples. 


MNsure health insurance signup deadline is Sunday | INFORUM

Minnesotans have only a few days left to sign up through the state’s MnSure – its health insurance service.

The agency said those seeking health insurance can qualify for instant discounts that can make monthly premiums more affordable. 


Enrollment events in Oak Ridge and Knoxville to help with health insurance coverage

There are two enrollment events in Knoxville and one in Oak Ridge before the end of the month.

There will be a meeting Wednesday, January 27, at the Oak Ridge Public Library on Oak Ridge Turnpike. It lasts from 4 – 8 p.m.

Two meetings will be held on Saturday and Sunday at Cherokee Health Systems on Western Avenue in Knoxville. They both start at 10 a.m. and end at 4 p.m.

Knoxville Mayor Madeline Rogero is urging people in Knoxville to learn about their options under the Affordable Care Act before open enrollment closes on January 31, 2016.

“Many people assume they can’t afford coverage. We want to make it as easy as possible for all Knoxville residents to get access to the information and resources they need,” Mayor Rogero said. 


An introduction to Health Insurance 101 | PostIndependent.com

Hi, my name is Susan Nichols-Alvis. I’m an insurance agent in Rifle. Today we’re going to talk about health insurance. (Dodges flying rotten produce.)

Seriously though, it’s a sensitive topic. With recent changes, including the adoption of the Affordable Care Act (ACA, aka Obama Care) in the United States, our mountain resort premium status furthers the hurt that much more. Health insurance premiums are expensive, and have been increasing for most folks each year. According to a 2013 article published onCNBC.com, medical bills are the biggest causeof bankruptcies in the U.S. 


NAACP works to ensure Kentuckians sign up for Kynect | Local News – WLKY Home

A civil rights group is working to ensure Kentuckians sign up for affordable health insurance. On Tuesday, the NAACP unveiled plans to run public service announcements to inform African-Americans about how to sign up for Kynect.

Gov. Matt Bevin has told federal officials his administration will begin to dismantle Kynect and transition Kentuckians to federal exchange.

Kynect has enrolled about 85,000 Kentuckians in private plans for 2016 and 425,000 others have been added to the state’s Medicaid rolls.