COVID-19 may have dominated the news in 2020, but InsuranceNewsNet’s readers were interested in other health-related issues during the year.
A look at INN’s most-read health-related articles for the year showed that long-term care insurance attracted the most reader interest, with two of the five most popular health-related articles devoted to the topic.
A March warning on the potential impact of COVID-19, the impact of the Affordable Care Act on pre-existing conditions, and advice to employers on controlling health care costs rounded out the most popular topics for 2020.
Here is a rundown of the five most popular InsuranceNewsNet articles relating to health insurance and benefits.
Trump Speech Errs On Health Insurers’ Coronavirus Commitment
In early March, as COVID-19 began to dominate the nation’s attention, President Donald Trump announced travel restrictions from 26 European nations while claiming that health insurance industry leaders pledged to waive all copayments for COVID-19 treatments.
The industry lobbying group, America’s Health Insurance Plans, quickly corrected the comment, stating that health insurers would waive all copayments for COVID-19 testing, but not treatment.
Pennsylvania Moves To Place Health Insurer In Rehabilitation
Pennsylvania Insurance Commissioner Jessica Altman filed an application with the state’s Commonwealth Court to have long-term care insurer Senior Health Insurance of Pennsylvania placed in rehabilitation, warning “SHIP’s financial condition is dire.”
SHIP’s insolvency grew to $462 million at the end of the first quarter of 2019, to $477 million at the end of the second quarter, and to $524 million at the end of the third quarter.
Genworth, Prudential Seek LTCi Rate Hikes In Favorable Conditions
State regulators approved a number long-term care insurance rate increases, even as work continues to establish a consistent national rate review process. Genworth and Prudential were among the carriers making news for their rate increases.
According to data collected by S&P Global Market Intelligence, regulators approved at least 243 LTCi rate hikes during the fourth quarter of 2019, which could lead to insurers collecting an additional $119.6 million in calculated written premiums across the country.
What Will Happen To Protection Over Pre-Existing Conditions?
In January, Trump tweeted he protected those with pre-existing conditions from being denied health insurance, even as he back an effort to repeal the Affordable Care Act. Protections for those with pre-existing conditions were included in the ACA. Republicans have attempted to weaken or repeal the law numerous times since the law was passed in 2010.
Helping Employer Clients Get A Handle On Health Care Costs
Health care costs keep rising and consumers aren’t the only ones feeling the financial pain. Employers also are seeing their expenses rise, and are beginning to question those expenses.
Larry Thompson, chief strategy officer at Advanced Medical Pricing Solutions, talked with InsuranceNewsNet about some tactics employers can use to contain their health care costs and protect their workers from over paying for health care services. He also gave some advice for health brokers who want to help their employer clients get a handle on health care costs.
Susan Rupe is managing editor for InsuranceNewsNet. She formerly served as communications director for an insurance agents' association and was an award-winning newspaper reporter and editor. Contact her at Susan.Rupe@innfeedback.com. Follow her on Twitter @INNsusan.
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