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Health & Welfare Plans Newsletter

September 28, 2021

4 New Job Opportunities


[Guidance Overview]

Health Care Reform Compliance Checklist for Plan Sponsors (PDF)

Updated Sep. 24, 2021. "The purpose of this checklist is to provide a summary of the principal requirements under the [ACA] ... that apply to employer-sponsored group health plans."  MORE >>

Snell & Wilmer

[Guidance Overview]

An Update on the Rules for Healthcare FSAs and DCAPs

"The IRS recently changed the rules governing these accounts due to the impact of COVID-19 on people's ability to use their FSA and DCAP funds. These changes address: [1] Midyear elections; [2] Eligible expenses; [3] Claim/grace periods; [and] [4] Carryover amount."  MORE >>

Willis Towers Watson

Fifth Circuit Finds Blue Cross Did Not Abuse Its Discretion in Denying Continued Inpatient Treatment for Minor Following Fifth Suicide Attempt

"The court found that substantial evidence supports Blue Cross's determination that an acute, inpatient level of treatment was not appropriate after February 10th. Even though less-than-acute-inpatient treatment did not work after MP's first four suicide attempts, Blue Cross had substantial evidence to conclude that 15 days of acute inpatient care was all that was medically necessary." [Michael P. v. Blue Cross & Blue Shield of Texas, No. 20-30361 (5th Cir. Sept. 22, 2021; unpub.)  MORE >>

Roberts Disability Law

Trends in Retail Prices of Specialty Prescription Drugs Widely Used by Older Americans, 2006 to 2020

"In 2020, the average annual cost of therapy for a single specialty prescription drug, based on the market basket used in this study, was $84,442 per year. This average annual cost was ... 13 times higher than the average annual price of therapy for brand name prescription drugs ($84,442 v. $6,604, respectively). Notably, the average annual cost for one specialty medication used on a chronic basis would have been $39,068 in 2020 ... if the price changes for these products had been limited to general inflation between 2006 and 2020."  MORE >>


Costly Undiagnosed Hypertension Persists

"The high proportion of undiagnosed hypertension in the youngest studied age group is a reminder for employers to reach all demographics with their wellness programs, even those in younger age brackets presumed to be 'healthier.' Early investment and treatment can help reduce health concerns later on."  MORE >>

Corporate Synergies


2022 Onsite Employee Health Clinics Summit (January 20 - 21, 2022; Scottsdale, AZ)

The leading forum on building & expanding On-Site Health Clinics – incorporating strategies that reduce costs, ensure employee satisfaction and positively impact patient behavior! Register now at

Sponsored by World Conference Forum

Employer Health Benefit Strategies That Lower Healthcare Costs

"To combat expensive health benefits, employers have implemented various strategies in their employer-sponsored health plans. Advanced primary care, episode-based benefits, integrated health benefits, and -- for small businesses -- joining an association health plan are tactics that have demonstrated some cost-savings."  MORE >>

HealthPayer Intelligence

Improving Your Employees' Mindset About Benefits, One Step at a Time

"Why team members may struggle with the employee benefits experience  ... Offering the right mix of employee benefits ... Make choosing benefits a positive experience."  MORE >>

Tango Health


Letter to Congress from P4ESC Opposing Enactment of Civil Monetary Penalties for Mental Health Parity Violations (PDF)

"Civil monetary penalty enforcement could be a tool to impose network adequacy requirements, by penalizing employers based on the raw number of mental health or substance use disorder providers in network. Yet, employer networks consistently report that these providers refuse to bargain in good faith and decline to participate in our networks at reasonable rates ... Imposing penalties on plan sponsors cannot solve provider shortages."  MORE >>

Partnership for Employer-Sponsored Coverage [P4ESC]

Benefits in General

Preview of 2021-2022 Compensation, Retirement and Benefits Trends Survey

"Salary increases are on the rebound, approaching 3% for executive and salaried exempt employees, and above 3% for the hourly non-exempt workforce.... Companies are implementing, or considering implementing, increased health and welfare benefits for employees. Among retirement plans, financial wellness programs are on the rise."  MORE >>

Newport Group

Employee Benefits Jobs

View job as Retirement Plan Administrator
for The Nolan Company Retirement Plan Administrator

The Nolan Company

Remote / Overland Park KS

View job as Retirement Plan Administrator
for The Nolan Company

View job as 401k/DC Plan Administrator
for Lebenson Actuarial Services 401k/DC Plan Administrator

Lebenson Actuarial Services

Remote / Las Vegas NV

View job as 401k/DC Plan Administrator
for Lebenson Actuarial Services

View job as Associate Director, Corporate Benefits
for B. Braun Medical Inc. Associate Director, Corporate Benefits

B. Braun Medical Inc.

Bethlehem PA

View job as Retirement Plan Administrator
for Big Sky Retirement Retirement Plan Administrator

Big Sky Retirement

Helena MT

Press Releases

K&L Gates Adds New York Partner to Benefits, ESOPs and Executive Compensation Practice

K&L Gates

The Standard Introduces Accelerate for Small Retirement Plans

The Standard

Vanguard to Lower Investor Costs by an Estimated $190 Million Through Enhancements to Its Target Retirement Series


Last Issue's Most Popular Items

HHS Issues Proposed Rules Implementing the Individual Health Insurance Agent and Broker Fee Disclosure Requirements

Groom Law Group

Agencies Clarify Implementation Dates for Group Health Plan Transparency Rules

Spencer Fane

CMS Will Pay for COVID-19 Booster Shots, Eligible Consumers Can Receive at No Cost

Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services [CMS], U.S. Department of Health and Human Services [HHS]

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BenefitsLink Retirement Plans Newsletter, ISSN no. 1536-9587.

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