This year saw not only more implementations of President Barack Obamas signature health care law, but already some changes to it by both the legislative and judicial arms of government. Additionally, new technologies and outlooks are changing how benefit decision-makers are strategizing wellness programs. Take a look back and make sure your own policies are up to date, based on EBNs analysis from throughout the year.
With details of the final regulations released by the U.S. Department of Treasury in February, employers subject to the mandate can now make employee coverage decisions and prepare for enforcement beginning this coming January.
Health and wellness programs are virtually meaningless if a workplace culture is bad, according to Jeffrey Pfeffer, a professor of organizational behavior at Stanford Universitys graduate school of business.
Employers have always been concerned about the potential for worker reclassification, but health care reform and a recent National Labor Relations Board decision take this issue to an entirely new level.
A handful of guidance items that the Departments of Labor, Health and Human Services, and Treasury have issued this year make some important changes related to the regulation of excepted benefits, driven in large part by the insurance market reforms and other provisions of the Affordable Care Act.
In an attempt to overturn the divisive Supreme Court Hobby Lobby decisions, the Senate failed to get enough support for its reversal plan that will allow some employers to decline providing insurance coverage for some forms of birth control based on religious grounds.
Whatever the Supreme Courts decision in Hobby Lobbys challenge to the Affordable Care Acts contraception mandate, it wont likely have broad implications for all employers, according to Howard Shapiro, partner and head of Proskauers ERISA litigation group in New Orleans.
The House in April passed legislation that would modify the Affordable Care Acts definition of a full-time employee from one who works 30-hours a week to one who works 40-hours a week.
With the Affordable Care Act increasing the incentive for employees to quit smoking, many employers are wondering how e-cigarettes fit into their wellness program, or if they even do at all.
For the third time this year, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission launched legal action against a private employer, claiming discrimination on the part of the companys wellness program.
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