WIPP's legislative strategy is to have the greatest possible impact for small business owners. We focus on our economic principles and craft a succinct small business message that we bring directly to members of Congress, the White House and Federal Agencies. Your guidance and advocacy efforts together with political reality allows us to move our agenda forward effectively.
The SBA Office of Advocacy research shows that insurers
of small business health plans have higher administrative expenses than their larger
counterparts. It is no surprise that more than one third of uninsured Americans
work in small businesses with fewer than 500 employees. With the enactment of the
Affordable Care Act, state-based health insurance exchanges will be established
for small businesses effective in 2014.
Health Insurance Exchanges Provide More Choices and Better Prices for Small Businesses
Rules and regulations that are adopted by federal and
state governments to create and implement health insurance exchanges should be structured
to maximize health insurance choices for small businesses. In order for the exchanges
to be successful, health insurance premiums for small businesses must fall in line
with other segments of the marketplace. Regulators should learn from past exchange
successes and failures at the state level.
Containment Measures Should Address Increased Healthcare Costs
One of the major drivers behind healthcare reform was
the need to control increasing healthcare costs. According to the Kaiser Family
Foundation, healthcare spending has grown at an average annual rate of 9.6%, 2.4
percentage points faster than nominal GDP since 1970. The federal government projects
that by the year 2018, health spending will be one-fifth of the GDP.
Cost containment measures are needed to address increased
healthcare costs such as medical malpractice. Furthermore, wellness and preventive
care should be a priority of the providers as well as the consumers of healthcare.
The following is a list of legislation that WIPP is actively following:
- Small Business Health Relief Act HR 880
- Equity for Our Nation's Self-Employed Act
WIPP submitted comments for the record on the "use-or-lose" rule for Flexible Spending Accounts 9/17/12
WIPP submitted comments for the record on proposed SHOP delays 3/1/13
HEALTHCARE NEWS & POLICY UPDATES
Fact Sheet: HHS Final Rule on Health Insurance Exchanges - 3/12/12.
President's FY13 Budget Proposal Fact Sheet on Small Business Healthcare Tax Credits- 2/16/12.
HHS Names 73 "Innovation Advisors" - 1/3/12.
The following is a list of presentations, statements and letters that WIPP has released:
What's Ahead in Heath Reform – Preparing for the Next 6 Months - 8/2/12
WIPP sent a letter to Senate leadership in opposition to Amendment 2107 to S. 3187 which expands importation of foreign pharmaceuticals. To read the letter, click here
Making Exchanges Work for Small Business - 3/22/12.
ADD YOUR VOICE
WELLNESS STRATEGIES FOR THE WORKPLACE
Pfizer Medicine Safety Education Website:
How much do you know about the medicine you are taking? Do you know what information to provide to your doctor? Are there risks associated with the medicine you are taking? Click here to visit a comprehensive medicine safety website which will help you understand your medicines. Click here to see the Pfizer Medicine Safety Education Website logo
The Challenges and Rewards of Promoting Wellness in the Workplace
, click here
Department of Health and Human Services released new Physical Activity Guidelines for Americans, a roadmap encouraging individuals to incorporate physical activity into their daily routines. This is based on the fact that regular physical activity over months and years produces long-term health benefits and reduces the risk of many diseases such as early death for adults; coronary heart disease, stroke, high blood pressure, type 2 diabetes, colon and breast cancer, and depression. As we know, small businesses struggle to afford the rising costs of health insurance premiums. Promoting healthy living for employees directly correlates with long term health costs.
The Physical Activity Guidelines are based on a review of scientific research about physical activity and health. A 13-member advisory committee appointed in April 2007 by Secretary Leavitt reviewed research and produced an extensive report.
Key Guidelines for adults include:
Adults -- Adults gain substantial health benefits from two and one half hours a week of moderate intensity aerobic physical activity, or one hour and 15 minutes of vigorous physical activity. Walking briskly, water aerobics, ballroom dancing and general gardening are examples of moderate intensity aerobic activities. Vigorous intensity aerobic activities include racewalking, jogging or running, swimming laps, jumping rope and hiking uphill or with a heavy backpack. Aerobic activity should be performed in episodes of at least 10 minutes. For more extensive health benefits, adults should increase their aerobic physical activity to five hours a week moderate-intensity or two and one half hours a week of vigorous-intensity aerobic physical activity. Adults should incorporate muscle strengthening activities, such as weight training, push-ups, sit-ups and carrying heavy loads or heavy gardening, at least two days a week.
Women during pregnancy -- Healthy women should get at least two and one half hours of moderate-intensity aerobic activity a week during pregnancy and the time after delivery, preferably spread through the week. Pregnant women who habitually engage in vigorous aerobic activity or who are highly active can continue during pregnancy and the time after delivery, provided they remain healthy and discuss with their health care provider how and when activity should be adjusted over time.
Click to View the Guidelines: http://www.health.gov/paguidelines/pdf/paguide.pdf
Migraine Awareness Month - June 2012
Healthy Weight Commitment Foundation
Healthy Weight Commitment Foundation is a CEO-led organizationand is a national, multi-year effort designed to help reduce obesity – especially childhood obesity – by2015. It’s a first-of-its kind coalition that brings together more than 80 retailers, food and beverage manufacturers, sporting goods, insurance, trade associations and NGOs. The Healthy Weight Commitment Foundation will promote ways to help people achieve a healthy weight through energybalance – calories in and calories out. It focuses on three critical areas – the marketplace, the workplaceand schools.
Partners have launched websites supporting the Healthy Weight Commitment Foundation, and are listed below:
Click here to read more about the Healthy Weight Commitment Foundation.
Click here to read a fact sheet about the Healthy Weight Commitment Foundation.
Click here to read FAQs about the Healthy Weight Commitment Foundation.
Click here to read a fact sheet and FAQ.
Fibromyalgia and Chronic Pain in the Workplace:
Fibromyalgia in your Business:
As more resources regarding the
Affordable Care Act are provided by the federal government as well as the
states, WIPP wants to make sure you are aware of all that is available. The
resources listed below can also be found on WIPP's healthcare page. Here
are three resources important to small businesses:
1. What is Your State Doing To Put a Small Business
Marketplace in Place
Following the February 15th deadline for states to file exchange plans with the
Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), the state-by-state picture has
been finalized. The breakdown of the fifty states and District of Columbia are:
18 states have declared their own exchanges, 7 have partnered with the federal
government and 26 states defaulted to the federal exchange. To see what your
state decided, click
2. SBA Myth vs. Fact blog on the Affordable Care Act and Small Businesses
The SBA just launched a new blog on their website aimed at tackling
common misconceptions regarding the Affordable Care Act and small business
obligations. The blog can be found here.
3. YouTube on the Affordable Care Act
The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) at HHS have released
a video of the application process for an individual (not a small business) in
the health insurance marketplace. You can view that video, and find the comment
submission process for review here.
Healthcare: Policy, Trends and Opportunities Regional Series - Sponsored by Pfizer
PowerPoint Presentations from the Raleigh/Durham, NC Event on 4/7/2011
- The New Healthcare Law: Where Small Businesses Fit - Ann Sullivan, WIPP Government Relations
- Trends, Your Key to Opportunity - Sherrie Aycock, All Points Research
Healthy Weight Resource Guide
Fact Sheet: The Affordable Care Act’s New Rules on Preventive Care
HHS website for consumer information on the healthcare law: http://www.healthcare.gov
Calculation of Subsidy by the Kaiser Family Foundation: http://healthreform.kff.org/SubsidyCalculator.aspx
Click here to watch Lisa Gable, the executive director of the Healthy Weight Commitment Foundation, comment on the effects of obesity on families, and the important work the HWCF is doing to address this problem
A Caregiver's Guide to Alzheimer's Disease
"Maybe It's Fibro?" Treatment and Management article
Check out these websites:
· Business Owners Can Take Lead Role in Smoking Cessation, click here.
· Switching Medications: Cost-effective for insurers or risky for patients – or both? Click here.
· Fibromyalgia: Chronic Pain That Packs a Punch to You and Your Employee <click here>
· Pfizer Helpful Answers, assistance for the uninsured: http://www.pfizerhelpfulanswers.com/
· Smarxt Disposal: this is a campaign called SMARxT DISPOSAL, sponsored by PhRMA, (the American Pharmacists Association), and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, introduced a campaign called SMARxT DISPOSAL which gives tips for methods of proper disposal of unused or expired pharmaceuticals. You can visit the campaign's website at http://www.smarxtdisposal.net/
More sites to visit and resources for you and your employees:
· Alzheimer's Association
· American Cancer Society
· American Cancer Society Guide to Quit Smoking
· American Diabetes Association
· American Heart Association
· American Institute of Stress
· American Obesity Association
· American Specialty Health
· Department of Health & Human Services Healthfinder
· Food & Nutrition Information Center
· Leukemia & Lymphoma Society Team In Training
· National Institutes of Health (NIH)
· SImple Coverage.org
· Stress (Medline Plus)
· Stress Links
· Stress Management (Mind Tools)
· The National Mental Health Association
Information about the Healthcare Summit, hosted by the White House - 2/25/10.
WIPP Letter to Senator Reid (D-NV) on Dorgan Amendment #2793 - 12/11/09.
C4CC Education Fund Launches Discussion Forum for Consumers with Health Insurance Questions: www.SimpleCoverage.org. Click here
to view the release - 7/1/09.