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Broker Guide
 The latest Pulse guide is available online at blueshieldca.com/pulse introducing Smart Shield, our new PPO and HMO plan portfolio for your 51+ groups. 
MidLarge Groups
January 2013 Product Cycle Launch: Introducing Smart Shield
Smart Shield offers a no-hassle approach to easy-to-understand benefit plans with clear and consistent benefit plan designs to meet your clients’ coverage needs.
Benefit plans are straightforward with a progression of price and cost-sharing options to help you pinpoint the choice that best suit your client’s needs. Visit blueshieldca.com/smartshield to learn more.
Online Comparison Tool
We are excited to introduce the Online Plan Comparison Tool  which allows brokers to compare up to three PPO or HMO plans side-by-side and customize with broker and group information and output it as a PDF.
Employer Exchange Notices to be distributed by October 1
As part of the Employer Mandate provisions, employers are required to provide employees with a written notice about Covered California (the Exchange). Employers need to distribute these notices by October 1, 2013. The Department of Labor has issued model notices for employers to use. Learn more about this mandate and download model notices.
July 2010: Solid support and affordable solutions for midsize and large groups
February 1, 2010
Bigger SaveNetSM service area for Southern California clients, new prescription drug plans that encourage generic utilization, and new Vision Standard Materials only plans – new for Twenty Ten.
Change to reimbursement for non-network hospitals in California
October 16, 2009
Blue Shield's payment for covered non-network hospital services will no longer be based on billed charges. Instead, we will pay them based on a region-based fee schedule developed by Blue Shield. This change applies to covered non-network PPO hospital emergency services and non-network HMO authorized hospital services (including emergency care) on all fully insured Blue Shield Mid/Large Groups of 51+ eligibles. It does not include ASO or Medicare groups.
 
This change is effective December 1, 2009 for your new or renewing November and December 2009 clients. For groups new or renewing January 1, 2010 or later, this change will apply on your client's effective date.
 
Employers will receive a notice (PDF, 40KB) starting the week of October 23, 2009.
November 2009: New plans, programs and updates for midsize and large groups
The new Core Flex HMO plan package, SaveNet plan pairing options, dental and vision plans, and online productivity tools – Blue Shield has the right plans for right now to help you win and retain more business.
The Right Plans for Right Now
During these challenging times, relief is here. We have the right plans, right now to help manage costs and improve employers' bottom line.
Impact of 2009 Federal Stimulus Bill on COBRA coverage subsidy
March 13, 2009
The federal government's recent economic stimulus package, the American Recovery & Reinvestment Act, includes a COBRA subsidy provision for those involuntarily terminated between September 1, 2008 and December 31, 2009. The act states that eligible COBRA beneficiaries can receive a subsidy for 65 percent of the premium they pay for a maximum of nine months, beginning March 1, 2009. Learn more about this act and how to respond to your clients.
1. Towers Watson, 5/10
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