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Wellness Programs: Legal Developments, Requirements And Risks

As Congress looks at making significant changes to health insurance, wellness programs are playing a central role in the debate. Congress wants to encourage wellness programs and healthy lifestyles to help control the cost of health insurance and much of their interest is based on success stories from the private sector. But privacy advocates and some federal regulators take the position that wellness programs erode individual rights. Despite the regulatory uncertainties, more employers than ever are looking to wellness programs to control health insurance costs. Some employers are providing incentives to employees who participate in wellness programs, follow disease management protocols or choose to live healthy lifestyles. Other employers are imposing penalties on employees who smoke or refuse to participate in wellness initiatives. This teleconference explores the legal developments and requirements of wellness programs, including the design and taxation of incentives, laws that prohibit discrimination based on health factors, and exceptions for certain wellness and supplemental plans. Agenda
  • Background and Overview of Recent Developments
  • Recent Developments
  • Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act
  • HITECH Act
  • Recent Regulations and Guidance
  • Health Reform Legislation
  • Types of Wellness Programs
  • Types of Wellness Programs
  • Tools
  • Disease Management
  • Goals
  • Risk Identification
  • Behavioral Modification
  • Reducing the Cost of Chronic Disease
  • Types of Incentives
  • Reduction in Health Insurance Premiums, Coinsurance or Copays
  • Contributions to HSAs or HRAs
  • Cash
  • Other Rewards
  • Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act
  • HIPAA Nondiscrimination Regulations
  • HITECH Act
  • Americans With Disabilities Act
  • Applicability to Wellness Programs
  • Impact of New Amendments Effective January 1, 2009
  • Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act
  • EEOC Regulations
  • IRS, DOL and HHS Regulations
  • Federal and State Tax Rules
  • State Laws
  • Other State Laws
  • The Cutting Edge: Penalties and Risks
  • ADA: What Is Voluntary? What Are Penalties?
  • GINA: What Are the Limits?
  • What Is the Impact of Health Care Reform on Wellness Programs?

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    Joseph Kiefer

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