[ Tuesday, July 24, 2007 ]


The Other HIPAA: Or at least one of the other HIPAAs. We focus primarily on privacy and security here, the AdminSimp portions dealing with medical records, EDI and the like. But there's the health insurance part of HIPAA, too, which HR folks have to deal with. Part of that is "portability," the P in HIPAA. But there's also the nondiscrimination provisions of HIPAA, which basically try to prevent health plans from cherry-picking or giving better rates to healthier individuals (and worse rates to unhealthy ones). The problem with nondiscrimination is that it IS a good idea to incentivize people to live healthier lifestyles and eliminate unhealthy habits like smoking (what you want to aviod is discriminating against someone who's unhealthy due to no fault of their own, like bad genes). So, you can set up a health plan that rewards people for stopping smoking or getting healthy (i.e., "wellness plans"), but you have to do it carefully and in a not-completely-logical way. That's what these regulations are about.

Jeff [5:39 PM]

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