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The BenefitsLink Newsletter -
Welfare Plans Edition
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July 12, 2002 - 6,490 subscribers
Today's sponsor: EBIA's COBRA: The Developing Law

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(Help BenefitsLink to provide this newsletter at no charge to you -- our sponsors pay our way. Remember to visit them periodically; we try to make sure their products and services will be of interest to you. Thanks! --Editor)

Senate HELP Committee Approves Generic Drug Bill
Excerpt: "The Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee Thursday approved a bill sponsors say will close loopholes in the 1984 'Hatch-Waxman' generic drug law that brand-name drugmakers have been exploiting to delay generic competition." (Reuters Health via Yahoo! News)

HHS Study on Drug Coverage Warns of Too Much Regulation
Excerpt: "The administration's analysis does not mention the pending Senate debate, but it essentially lays out a justification for resisting the approach to drug benefits that many Democrats favor. Democrats want to make drug coverage a new part of Medicare ..." (Washington Post)

Online Database of Health Plan Formularies Launched
Excerpt: "The Council for Affordable Quality Healthcare today launched an online database of health plan formularies to provide physicians a single source of information on patients' prescription drug coverage. The Formulary DataSource will allow physicians to verify that the drugs they prescribe are covered by patients' health plans without having to consult numerous paper guides ..." (iHealthBeat.com; free registration required)

Fraudulent Domestic Partnership Registrations Increasing
Excerpt: "New York City passed a domestic-partnership law in 1998, allowing gay and unmarried straight couples to get health-care coverage. Now, however, with New York's unemployment rate nearing 8 percent, the number of registered partnerships are curiously on the rise." (Gay Financial Network)

Consumer-Driven Health Insurance Gains Momentum
Excerpt: "If you were given only $1,500 to buy your groceries for a year, you'd read the supermarket flyers, shop around for the best deals, and forgo the lobster. This is exactly the kind of 'consumer-driven' behavior some employers are hoping to spark in you and your co-workers by offering 'consumer-driven' and defined contribution health plans." (insure.com)

Aetna, CIGNA Marketing High-Deductible Health Plans To More Companies
Excerpt: "Companies including Aetna and CIGNA are expanding the availability of their new high-deductible health plans to fully insured employers after previously selling them only to large employers with self-funded plans." (The Hartford Courant)

Links to Items on Executive Comp, Benefits in General
(These items appear in both editions of the BenefitsLink Newsletter)

Stock Options Vote Blocked in Senate Reform Debate
Excerpt: "U.S. Senate Democrats blocked an attempt to have a vote on the controversial issue of stock options on Thursday as the chamber haggled over what should be added to a massive corporate-reform bill." (Reuters via Yahoo! News)

Older Workers Stay in the Work Force
Excerpt: "Senior citizens aged 65 and older will account for 2.9 percent of the work force in 2010, according to projections from the Bureau of Labor Statistics. That's up from 2.4 percent in 2000, 2.3 percent in 1990 and 2.4 percent in 1980." (The Augusta Chronicle via International Foundation of Employee Benefit Plans)

Overview: Proposed Regs Issued on Split-Dollar Life Insurance (PDF)
Excerpt: "When [the final regulations are] published, the Revenue Rulings that have effectively governed tax treatment of split dollar life insurance arrangements for almost 40 years will become obsolete." (Vinings Management Corporation)

Newly Posted or Renewed Job Openings - Post a Help Wanted Ad
Employee Benefits Attorney for Thompson Hine LLP
in OH
Benefits Administrator for Nixon Uniform Services, Inc.
in DE
Pension Consultant for Baden Retirement Plan Services, LLC
in IN
Pension Administrator for Price Reinhardt Price, Inc.
in CA
Deputy Human Resources Director for Riverside County Human Resources Department
in CA
Benefits Plan Administrator for Constellation Energy Group
in MD
Pension Administration Team Leader for Sentinel Benefits Group
in MA
Benefits Specialist for The Benefits Group, Inc.
in CA

Newly Posted Press Releases
Riverside County Office of Education goes "live" with web-native technology from Novantus Corporation (NOVANTUS CORPORATION)

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Editor and Publisher: David Rhett Baker, J.D.