A Note from the President
It’s been said that the best way to experience all that NAHU has to offer their members is to attend a national event, such as Capitol Conference or National Convention and I couldn’t agree more. With the future of the industry in such a questionable state, I cannot think of a better time to become reenergized and the perfect place to do that is NAHU’s Capitol Conference. The upcoming 2012 Capitol Conference will take place January 23-25 at the Hyatt Regency Capitol Hill in Washington, DC.
It kicks off with a full day of health policy education and discussions lead by NAHU staff and subject matter experts. The second and third days are mixed between a range of speakers discussing the future of our industry and spreading NAHU’s message on Capitol Hill. There are also HUPAC fundraising events and networking opportunities scattered in as well.
It is extremely important this year, not only that we make a strong showing, but that we are presenting our lawmakers with health reform ideas that work. The 2012 elections are looming over all of us and the political leaders’ response to health reform is of utmost significance. With your extensive knowledge of the insurance marketplace, the needs of the consumer and the inter- workings of the employer-based delivery system, you are more than the perfect audience to educate our lawmakers about implications and realities of health care reform.
Capitol Conference is also a great chance to network and learn from other fellow industry leaders, not just about health reform, but ideas about how to stay ahead of the curve in these tumultuous times. Remember, we need as many members as we can get in Washington, DC in January to help make our voices heard. I am excited to be heading up there to be a part of it and I really hope to see many of your faces standing next to me.
For more information about Cap Conference, please see click here for the conference website. Early bird registration goes until December 8 and the chapter has set aside funds to help a few of our members with this cost. If you are interested in this reimbursement, please email email@example.com for more details.
Hilton Orlando/Altamonte Springs 350 S. Northlake Blvd. Altamonte Springs, FL 32701
Tuesday, December 13, 2011, 11:30 AM
presented by Julian Lago
Do you understand how the Exchanges will work? If not, you don’t want to miss our December meeting, as Julian Lago will us in on the latest information on Health Care Exchanges.
Julian currently serves on the NAHU working group as the Exchange Coordinator for the state of Florida. He served as FAHU President for 2009-2010 and is a Past President of the Palm Coast AHU. Julian currently serves as legislative chair for his local chapter and as HUPAC chair for the state.
Lunch will be
Chicken Toscana over herb Gorgonzola risotto with green beans Iced Tea and water
Black forest cake
Vegetarian option available upon request. Please request with RSVP.
CE to immediately follow lunch.
Social Security Disability Benefits – 1 Hour CE
Presented by Joanne S. Wilburne, Esq.
This CE will be useful to health insurance agents seeking a better understanding of how the SSD process works. It will cover the major steps an attorney takes in a disability case from intake to appeals, including: · the five steps involved in a sequential evaluation of disability
· SSA and the Administrative Law Judge
· Medical opinions
· the distinction between SSD and SSI, and
· how long term disability insurance affects SSD and Medicare eligibility.
Joanne found her niche as a legal advocate and has been helping clients win disability claims for nearly ten years. Admitted to the Florida Bar in 1997, she has been a practicing attorney since 1998.
Also an educator, Joanne has combined her love of teaching with a passion for justice that began in her 20’s when her family’s business closed and the family suffered serious financial loss. Her continuing work as a legal advocate enables her to help often frustrated disability claimants learn to navigate the system, maintain their dignity and secure the monthly income and benefits to which they are entitled.
Her law career began when she relocated from New York to the Tampa Bay area and became the elder law advocate with Bay Area Legal Services, New Port Richey, Florida. In 2003 she took the helm of a 23- year old practice in Inverness that became Stepp & Wilburne, P.A., soon renamed Joanne S. Wilburne, P.A.
Today, with offices throughout central Florida, the firm’s concentration is in social security disability, VA disability, probate and guardianships, Medicare drug denials, and also handles wills, trusts and durable power of attorney.
In addition to court admissions in the U.S. Middle District of Florida and Florida Courts, Joanne is admitted to practice before the United States Supreme Court. In Social Security matters, she is able to practice in all 50 states.
She is a certified teacher in New York and Florida and was an adjunct professor of law for Argosy University at the Tampa campus.
Joanne earned her Juris Doctor in 1997 from City University of New York School of Law. She holds a Bachelor’s degree in elementary education from Syracuse University and in 1982 obtained a Masters degree in secondary education from New York’s Long Island University.
RSVP to firstname.lastname@example.org by Friday, December 9th Please note if you will stay for the CE.
We will be collecting toys and chocolates at the December meeting for Loaves and Fishes. Please bring Hershey Kisses and/or Hershey Mini Candy Bars and/or games or toys. A list of suggestions are included on page 3 of their newsletter .
We don’t yet have a sponsor for our December meeting. Interested? Contact Jim Scheib at (407) 975-1643 or email@example.com or Ashley Wynkoop at (407) 975-1646 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
A huge Thank You goes out to Melissa Atkins at Cigna and Natalee Otero-Newman at United Healthcare for sponsoring our Masquerade Party on October 25.
Everyone who attended had a great time!
NOW, is the time to support HUPAC! It is our “March to a $ Million”
“Every man owes a part of his time and money to the business or industry in which he is engaged. No man has moral right to withhold his support from an organization that is striving to improve conditions within his sphere.” Theodore Roosevelt
Please go to : www.hupac.org and contribute online or send a check to HUPAC P.O. Box 20865, Indianpolis, IN 46220-0865
Ph 703-276-0220 Fax 317-253-9285
Take the first step and give hope to the kids of St. Jude!
Join us on Saturday, November 19, as St. Jude supporters in the Orlando community, and in 80 cities nationwide come together to participate in the St. Jude Give Thanks Walk to raise money for the children of St. Jude Children ’ s Research Hospital.
Location: Lake Eola Park-International Plaza, corner of Central and Osceola, Orlando, FL 32801
Walk Start Location: International Plaza on the corner of Central Blvd and Eola Drive
Walker Check-in Starts: 8:00am Walk Starts: 9:00am
To Register for the walk, please follow these instructions:
- Go to www.givethankswalk.org and click Find a walk. Locate the Orlando option and click for homepage.
- On the Orlando event homepage you can find all the details(venue address, time, patient stories, etc.). Click
on the Register tab at the top.
- On the registration page, create a username and password. Then complete your registration form including the
section for Participation Type . Here click on Join a team and enter Central Florida Association of Health
- Submit, and share! You can use e -mail, facebook, twitter or other forms of social media to spread the word to
friends, family and colleagues about this event and how to support your team’s fundraising efforts.
For further information please contact Community Service Chair, Alex Good at 407 – 659-6907 or email him at Alex_E_Good@uhc.com
Supremes Fired Up over Health Care Case
The high court sets aside an unusually large block of time for oral arguments; companies are advised to hold off on implementing provisions slated to take effect in a few years.
Jeff Mamorsky Health Benefits November 16, 2011 CFO.com US
As we predicted in prior articles, on November 14 the Supreme Court decided to hear legal challenges to the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, commonly referred to as health- care reform or Obamacare. The central issue in the case involves the constitutionality of the individual mandate; that is, the requirement that all, or at least most, individuals purchase a qualifying health-insurance policy starting in 2014.
Contrary to the predictions of many legal experts, the Supreme Court also agreed to hear a number of other challenges to the law. The fact that the justices set aside five-and-a-half hours for oral arguments, more than for any other case in recent history, suggests the importance they are placing on the legal challenges.
The 26 states, along with the National Federation of Independent Business, that have filed suits over the law insist that with the individual mandate, Congress overstepped its constitutional right
to regulate interstate commerce. The Obama Administration argues that the mandate does not
require people to participate in commerce, but rather regulates how they pay for the health-care services that virtually everyone will require during their lifetime.
So far, two federal appeals courts have upheld the mandate, while one ruled it unconstitutional and another refused to reach a decision. (Concerning the law ’s expansion of Medicaid, another issue the Supreme Court agreed to consider, not a single lower court has agreed with the states’ position.)
What happens if the Supreme Court does not uphold Congress’s right to legislate the individual mandate? The provision is aimed at spreading risk and helping to control insurance premiums. Requiring every individual to carry a minimum policy will allow the federal government to prohibit insurers from denying coverage to patients with preexisting medical conditions. But without a mandate, Americans would likely reason that they could save money by postponing the purchase of an insurance policy until they needed one due to illness or injury. That would raise insurance premiums to unaffordable levels.
The court will consider two procedural issues that will be significant concerning the law’s implementation. One is the issue of severability — whether the mandate can be considered unconstitutional without destroying the rest of the law. There is concern from the Obama Administration that if the mandate were to be deemed unconstitutional, then the denial of exclusions for preexisting conditions would also have to be removed, as the two are intertwined for the reasons explained above. It is because of this entanglement that the states insist the entire law rests on the fate of the mandate.
Second, the court will closely review the issue of ripeness. Essentially, the justices stated that they will hear arguments about whether they can reach a decision now at all. One lower-court judge said the constitutional questions about the mandate will have to wait until 2014 because of the Anti-Injunction Act, a federal law that says a tax must take effect before citizens can try to overturn it in the courts. Under this 19th-century law, the individual mandate could not be challenged in court until 2015, when the first tax penalties for failing to purchase health insurance are scheduled to be paid.
No one can predict how the Supreme Court will decide the case. The fact that a majority of circuit courts have upheld its constitutionality has no bearing on that decision. Still, it is likely that the Supreme Court’s four liberal justices will uphold the law in its entirety. The outcome, therefore, will depend heavily on the five conservative justices. Although conservatives tend to vote on the side of limiting federal power, it is not at all clear that will be the outcome in this case, especially because several conservative appellate judges have already preserved the law.
Until the Supreme Court issues a final ruling on the various challenges to the health-care law, we continue to recommend that companies begin preparations for implementing its provisions. If the Supreme Court upholds the act’s constitutionality while severing the individual mandate, the act will remain on the books but will have costly results. It would likely need to be revised or amended.
Therefore, we suggest that companies should not be overzealous in adopting the act ’s far- reaching measures. Provisions nearing their effective date should be implemented, but those slated to take effect in the future should not be adopted until their effective dates draw closer.
Until a final decision is reached, it is important for CFOs as well as human-resources officials to continue familiarizing themselves with the act and to discuss its implementation. We will continue to monitor developments in the case and keep you informed as they unfold.
www.cfahu.org | www.fahu.org | www.nahu.org
PO Box 160790 | Altamonte Springs, FL 32716-0790
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