Thursday, July 06, 2017

Thursday Afternoon Potpourri

■ Our friends at Cornerstone have an update and explanation of the Social Security Number removal initiative (SSNRI), part of 2015's "“Medicare Access and CHIP Reauthorization” (MACRA).

The bottom line is that CMS will begin issuing new kinds of ID for Medicare beneficiaries, in an effort to hold down identity theft.

Also known as: major headache for providers.

■ As co-blogger Patrick reported this past Spring, the Small Business Health Options Program (SHOP) has been a resounding .... flop:

"Turns out SHOP enrollment is extremely cumbersome, there are less plan options compared to the off exchange market, and that tax credit, well it hasn't been worthwhile for most employers"


Well, the folks at Medical Mutual just emailed us to say "adios,muchachos:"

"Beginning January 1, 2018, Medical Mutual will no longer offer plans through the Small Business Health Options Program (SHOP) marketplace. Coverage will terminate for affected groups on their renewal date."

But hey, if you like your group health plan...

■ From the "You Don't See This Every Day" Department:

"Zurich American Life Insurance Company is offering to buy back some of its annuity contracts ...  it is making the offer partly because it believes some annuity holders' needs may have changed over time, and partly because it wants to exit this segment of the variable annuity business"

To sweeten the deal, they're offering an "enhancement amount."

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