Affordable Care Act Includes Free Flu Shots

Some of the Affordable Care Act’s “most tangible perks are finally in place,” reports The San Jose (CA) Mercury News (1/20).  And one potentially life-saving service – free flu shots – could represent a positive experience for millions of average Americans. The law now mandates that most health plans cover a set of preventive services, including shots and screening tests, with no co-payment – regardless of whether someone has met his or her yearly deductible.

See a list of the free services available under the new health care law.

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AB 792 California Health Benefit Exchange

For California Brokers

Beginning January 1, 2014, Assembly Bill 792 requires health insurers to provide individuals who cease to be enrolled in individual or group coverage a notice informing them that they may be eligible for reduced-cost coverage through the Covered California health insurance exchange or no-cost coverage through Medi-Cal.

There are two versions of the notice.

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Reform Update: President Offers a Fix for Insurance Plan Cancellations

On Thursday, President Obama proposed that each state allow those whose individual and small-business health insurance plans were slated to be cancelled at the end of the year to keep the same coverage through 2014.

Following the president’s announcement, the California insurance commissioner called upon Covered California to release participating health plans like Health Net from the contract provision requiring December 31 IFP terminations. He also called on health plans to extend coverage through next year.

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Small Business Group Update

For California Brokers – Small Business Group Update – Plan Closure Notices for February 1, 2014 Renewals


This notice is an update to the October 4 posting regarding notices to January 1, 2014 renewals.

The Affordable Care Act (ACA) is bringing numerous changes to health care. As our valued business partner, we recognize the importance of keeping you well-informed of any changes that affect your clients’ health benefit coverage. With that in mind, we’re sharing details with you about Health Net’s upcoming 2014 ACA-compliant Small Business Group (SBG) portfolio.

We have evaluated our portfolio to ensure you and your clients have the most valuable array of quality benefits from which to choose. As a result, we’re streamlining our SBG product portfolio to give you affordable, sustainable solutions that best meet the needs of your small business clients, and bolster your business-building potential.

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Update to Health Net’s Notice of Privacy Practices (NOPP)

Safeguarding your client’s privacy and protected health information is a top priority at Health Net. To do this, we continually update our privacy practices to comply with current laws and regulations. The department of Health and Human Services (HHS) has stated that health plans with access to Personal Health Information (PHI) must update their NOPP – and post it on their websites – to reflect the changes listed below by September 23, 2013.


Health Net’s updated NOPP can now be found on the website at > Privacy > Notice of Privacy Practices.


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California’s Mental Health Parity Law Update

Prohibition of annual visit and dollar limitations for treatment of Autism and pervasive developmental disorder (PDD)


Effective March 11, 2013, the California Department of Insurance adopted emergency regulations pertaining to California’s Mental Health Parity laws (Insurance Code sections 10144.5 and 10144.51). The emergency regulations are set to expire on September 10, 2013.

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California Lawmakers Send Health Plan Protection Bills to Governor

California BillsYesterday California lawmakers sent Governor Jerry Brown two bills (ABX1-2 and SBX1-2), designed to prevent health plans from denying coverage to individuals with pre-existing conditions.

The Assembly Bill ABX1-2 passed in a 49-20 vote; and the Senate Bill SBX1-2 passed in a 27-9 vote.

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COBRA: A Refresher

At some point your clients may ask you if there have been any updates or changes to COBRA. Here’s a reminder of the basics.

The new health care reform legislation, The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA) as amended by the Health Care and Education Reconciliation Act, did not extend the maximum time periods of continuation coverage provided by COBRA. COBRA establishes required periods of coverage for continuation health benefits. A plan, however, may provide longer periods of coverage beyond those required by COBRA.

COBRA beneficiaries generally are eligible for group coverage during a maximum of 18 months for qualifying events due to employment termination or reduction of hours of work. Certain qualifying events, or a second qualifying event during the initial period of coverage, may permit a beneficiary to receive a maximum of 36 months of coverage.

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Reform Legislation: Plans for 2014

Reform measures for 2014Last week we told you about reform legislation implemented so far, and provisions that will be taking place throughout 2013. So what legislation will be enacted in 2014 and beyond?

Read about basic reform requirements, health benefit exchange conditions, plan prerequisites, pooling and risk-sharing.

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