State laws hamper smoke-free workplace efforts

Employers hoping to cut health care costs look first toward low-hanging fruit, such as encouraging employees to reduce or eliminate unhealthy behaviors – and perhaps none is more preventable than smoking. Certainly few are more expensive – a smoker costs a company $12,000
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Restaurant Chains Cut Estimates for Health-Law Costs

Restaurant owners have been fierce critics of the health-care overhaul law, fearing that its mandate for employers to offer insurance more broadly will drive up costs and deter hiring. Now, some operators say the law may not be that costly after all. They say many employees won’
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Study: Health overhaul to raise claims cost 32%

WASHINGTON (AP) — Medical claims costs — the biggest driver of health insurance premiums — will jump an average 32% for Americans’ individual policies under the Affordable Care Act health care law, according to a study out Tuesday by the nation’s leading group of financial
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Why Do Some States Spend More on Health Care?

One of the interesting features of the Affordable Care Act is that reform basically takes place at the state level. Yet the states are very different. Some spend more than twice as much on health care as others, as a percent of state income. For example, health care spending in three
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Employers to increase pressure on doctors to justify costs

Self-insured employers are expecting to turn their attention more frequently to physicians as they try to find ways to reduce the cost and increase the quality of their workers’ health care. The likeliest trends that 583 companies, representing $103 billion in annual health spending,
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Employers Blast Fees From New Health Law

Employers are bracing for a little-noticed fee in the federal health-care law that will charge them $63 for each person they insure next year, one of the clearest cost increases companies face when the law takes full effect. Companies and other plan providers will together pay $25 bil
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California scores poorly on posting healthcare prices, report says

California consumers don’t have easy access to actual prices for medical care, according to a national report card that gave the state a D for its dismal showing. Overall, 36 states received a D or F in the report issued Monday by two nonprofit healthcare groups that analyzed go
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Most States Fail to Make The Grade In Health Care Price Transparency For Consumers

WASHINGTON and SAN FRANCISCO – MARCH 18, 2013 – A new Report Card on State Price Transparency Laws developed by two non-profits – Catalyst for Payment Reform(CPR) and the Health Care Incentives Improvement Institute (HCI3) – aims to improve the information available to consumers about
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Health Costs Slow To Lowest Rate In 15 Years As Employer Commitment To Benefits Wanes

Employer health care costs slowed this year to a five percent increase, the slowest growth in 15 years, but just one in four companies say they are “very confident” they will offer medical benefits 10 years from now even as more costs are shifted to their workers, a new analysis shows
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