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International Private Medical Insurance Magazine (iPMIM) is the ultimate Health and Medical Insurance Digital Media serving expatriate, corporate, health and travel insurance markets. Due to the nomadic nature of the international healthcare industry iPMI Magazine is an internet based news service, for worldwide healthcare professionals, who need to understand the impacts of healthcare and insurance policy, regulatory, and legislative developments. Combined with in depth health insurance industry analysis, best-in-class health insurance industry data, and exclusive, C-Suite Executive health insurance interviews and round tables, iPMI Magazine bridges an information gap between healthcare payor, provider and patient. Written by the health and medical insurance industry, for the health and medical insurance industry, iPMIM is supported and designed by leading international medical insurance companies and service providers.

Website URL: http://ipmimagazine.com

The ACA 5 Years On — Early Struggles Give Way To Strong Performance For U.S. Health Insurers

The U.S. health insurance segment has overcome early issues associated with The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA), and in the last two years has posted its highest underwriting and net incomes since the law went into effect at the start of 2014, according to a new AM Best report.

The Best’s Market Segment Report, titled, “The ACA Five Years On: Early Struggles Give Way to Strong Performance for U.S. Health Insurers,” states that the individual business has been substantially more profitable for insurers in the last two years of the ACA than the first three years, with industry net income of $23.2 billion in 2017 and $28.4 billion in 2018, compared with $12.3 billion in 2014. The report notes that despite the poor operating results early on in the individual line of business, other lines of business remained profitable. As a result, although earnings were negatively impacted by the individual ACA exchange business, the majority of health insurers remained profitable.

During the early years of the ACA, health insurers implemented multiple years of corrective pricing actions and benefit design changes. Furthermore, the stability of membership has allowed insurers to successfully enroll individuals in disease management programs, helping turn initial performance woes around. Additionally, the gradual decline in the pent-up demand for health care service among newly insured and an industry trend of lower broad-based utilization the past few years helped further improve results. Underwriting margins in 2017 topped 3% for the first time since 2011, and it remained at that level again in 2018. Performance throughout the industry has strengthened, as the percentage of companies reporting an underwriting loss has declined since 2015. Capital and surplus also has followed a similar pattern, topping $198 billion at year-end 2018.

“Given ever-shifting regulatory rules and seemingly constant lawsuits challenging the legality of the ACA, health insurers have had to contend with quite an uncertain operating environment over the last five years, yet they continued to push forward,” said Sally Rosen, AM senior director.

Other highlights of this report include:

  • A look at different ACA provisions and components and how they have fared since implementation, including the risk corridors program, consumer-operated and -oriented plans and the health insurer fee;
  • The impact of Medicaid expansion, which led to significant premium growth in the initial years of the ACA but has since leveled off; and
  • A timeline and discussion of legal and regulatory challenges, including more-recent developments such as association and short-term, limited-duration health insurance plans.

AM Best expects health care to remain at the forefront of the political conversation as the 2020 presidential elections near. In addition to changes to the ACA, another option likely to be explored is Medicare for All. With health insurance having become a heated political topic, AM Best believes that any new large-scale legislation amending or enhancing the existing ACA on the federal level is unlikely in 2019 or 2020. With the current divided federal government, getting all parties to agree on legislation that would change the ACA is highly doubtful.

To access the full copy of this market segment report, please visit http://www3.ambest.com/bestweek/purchase.asp?record_code=289753

AXIS Insurance Chief Claims Officer David Hayward To Retire, Will Be Succeeded by Michael Baumel

AXIS Insurance, a division of AXIS Capital Holdings Limited ("AXIS Capital") (NYSE: AXS), announced today that Chief Claims Officer David Hayward will retire in March 2020 and will be succeeded by Michael Baumel, current Head of North American Claims. Following the six-month transition period, Mr. Baumel will assume the Chief Claims Officer role. He will join the AXIS Insurance leadership team and report directly to CEO Peter Wilson.

Mr. Hayward will retire from AXIS following a career that has spanned more than thirty years, with the past seventeen years spent at AXIS. He has played an instrumental role in building the Company’s award-winning global claims management function.

“Dave’s contributions to AXIS cannot be understated. He has played a fundamental role in shaping our claims management strategy and he conceptualized and implemented many of the approaches that have helped us establish a Claims function that is widely recognized as one of the best in the specialty insurance industry,” said Mr. Wilson. “We have a great successor in Mike. During his more than four years with AXIS, Mike has established himself as a respected leader, a trusted partner to our clients and an individual who embodies our commitment to delivering exceptional service.”

Mr. Baumel has been with AXIS Insurance for more than four years, serving as the Head of North American Claims and working directly with Mr. Hayward. He has held multiple leadership roles in claims and in underwriting throughout his career, both in the United States and in Europe. This includes serving as Senior Vice President, Excess Casualty Claims, at ACE and multiple Claims Vice President positions at CNA. He began his insurance career at GE where he served as a Global Claims Special Services Leader. Prior to entering the insurance industry in 1999, Mr. Baumel practiced law in Chicago for 10 years, mostly as a public prosecutor. Mr. Baumel graduated from DePaul College of Law in 1989.

“This is a bittersweet moment for me. I have no doubt that Mike will be a tremendous Chief Claims Officer. Therefore, my decision to retire is made that much easier because I know that I’ll be leaving our Claims team in such capable hands,” said Mr. Hayward. “We have a tremendous Claims team, and I take great pride in the work that we’ve done to build a leading Claims function. I look forward to seeing the practice continue to flourish under Mike’s leadership.”

AM Best Downgrades Credit Ratings Of Aegon N.V.’s U.S. Subsidiaries

AM Best has downgraded the Financial Strength Rating (FSR) to A (Excellent) from A+ (Superior) and the Long-Term Issuer Credit Ratings (Long-Term ICR) to “a+” from “aa-” of the U.S. life/health subsidiaries of Aegon N.V. (Aegon) (Netherlands) [NYSE: AEG].

Aegon’s U.S. life/health companies are referred to collectively as Aegon USA Group (Aegon USA). The outlook of these Credit Ratings (ratings) have been revised to stable from negative. (See below for a detailed list of these companies.)

The ratings reflect Aegon USA’s balance sheet strength, which AM Best categorizes as very strong, as well as its adequate operating performance, favorable business profile and appropriate enterprise risk management.

The downgrades reflect a deterioration in AM Best’s assessment of Aegon’s consolidated operating performance. AM Best specifically notes that Aegon’s operating performance has been characterized by relatively flat top-line trends, together with returns on equity that do not compare favorably with its similarly-rated European peers.

The ratings of Aegon USA reflect that its U.S. operations maintain the strongest level of risk-adjusted capitalization, as measured by Best’s Capital Adequacy Ratio (BCAR), although the quality of capital is diminished from the historical reliance on special purpose captives to finance reserves generated from term life and universal life insurance with secondary guarantees. Aegon USA has additional access to liquidity as a member of the Federal Home Loan Banks, which together with its access to capital markets provides Aegon USA with substantial financial flexibility. While the asset allocation within Aegon USA’s investment portfolio is typical for the U.S. life industry, there is some continued exposure to higher risk assets.

Current year operating performance was affected by lower fee revenue due to declining equity markets along with unfavorable mortality experience and adverse persistency, but offset by aggressive expense reductions. The ratings also reflect Aegon USA’s continued profitability with good margins on new business.

Aegon USA’s product lines contribute to the company’s diversified earnings, including traditional life, variable life, variable annuities, mutual funds, pensions and accident and health insurance. While there is some volatility in Aegon USA’s operating performance, the U.S. entities maintain an underlying trend of profitability on both a statutory and IFRS basis. In addition, the organization’s increasing exposure to variable annuities exposes its earnings to volatility, and while hedged, Aegon USA’s earnings remain somewhat correlated to capital market performance. AM Best notes that overall top-line growth has been inconsistent, with direct premium declining in each of the past three years, even though ordinary life insurance premiums have grown modestly in the same period. Additionally, returns on equity have been generally in line with industry averages, albeit with some volatility. Aegon USA’s business profile continues to remain favorable, with competitive market positions in the U.S. life and annuity arenas, supported by a large and diversified distribution system and an integrated worksite strategy that leverages the group’s broad market presence.

There has been increasing commercial momentum in the United States, with some new business expense strain from the individual life business, along with a challenging market environment in employee benefits. AM Best notes that the company has made a strategic shift to focus more heavily on fee-based products, especially variable annuities, and has de-emphasized spread-based products, particularly fixed annuities. However, AM Best views variable annuities with living benefit riders as displaying some of the highest risk characteristics, as well as being vulnerable to tail risks, which could lead to an increase in required capital. Although the portfolio includes some products viewed as less creditworthy by AM Best, Aegon USA enjoys good diversification geographically and by product type.

The FSR has been downgraded to A (Excellent) from A+ (Superior) and the Long-Term ICRs have been downgraded to “a+” from “aa-” for the following members of the Aegon USA Group:

  • Transamerica Life Insurance Company
  • Transamerica Financial Life Insurance Company
  • Transamerica Premier Life Insurance Company

AM Best Revises Outlooks To Positive For Worldwide Medical Assurance, Ltd. Corp.

AM Best has revised the outlooks to positive from stable and affirmed the Financial Strength Rating (FSR) of B++ (Good) and the Long-Term Issuer Credit Rating (Long-Term ICR) of “bbb+” of Worldwide Medical Assurance, Ltd. Corp. (WWMA) (Panama City, Panama).

The Credit Ratings (ratings) reflect WWMA’s balance sheet strength, which AM Best categorizes as very strong, as well as its strong operating performance, neutral business profile and appropriate enterprise risk management (ERM).

The outlook revisions to positive follow sustained balance sheet strength underpinned by risk-adjusted capitalization maintained at the strongest level, as measured by Best’s Capital Adequacy Ratio (BCAR), as well as AM Best’s expectations that WWMA’s profitability will continue to help increase the company’s capital base.

The ratings also reflect WWMA’s sustained strong operating performance supported by sound underwriting practices and a conservative investment strategy, while maintaining its successful gradual expansion into other Latin American markets. These strengths are offset by the company’s dependence on its reinsurance counterparties to implement its growth targets and the highly competitive landscape in Latin America’s health and life insurance segments.

The company began operations in 1999 and has since grown successfully in its niche market, providing insurance for clients traveling overseas to receive medical attention. This is done through a mix of brokers, bancassurance and direct distribution channels. WWMA benefits from its partial ownership by KfW DEG, the German development bank, through its holding company, Worldwide Group, Inc. WWMA’s model of optimizing the selection of medical care providers with support of highly rated reinsurance counterparties also have provided benefits. In recent years, WWMA has expanded operations into other Latin American markets such as Guatemala, Bolivia and Paraguay.

Historically, WWMA has maintained positive capital-creation capacity, which along with a conservative strategy of reinvesting profits, has contributed to its sound risk-adjusted capitalization. Capital management is strengthened further by the use and development of WWMA’s economic capital model, ERM practices and improved diversification among highly rated reinsurers in 2018.

WWMA’s strong underwriting, risk retention and stringent expense practices translate into strong premium sufficiency metrics. Moreover, WWMA’s synergies with its sister company in the Dominican Republic in conjunction with periodic adjustments to its reinsurance structure have helped to optimize the company´s underwriting. These measures, combined with stable financial products, have resulted in sustained profitability indicators, such as return on equity and return on assets, which were 11.1% and 3.6%, respectively, at year-end 2018.

Factors that could lead to positive rating actions include sustained stable operating performance, the continuation in the midterm of its growing capital base supportive of a very strong balance sheet strength and successful consolidation of company operations in targeted locations while maintaining diversification among highly rated reinsurers. Negative rating actions are not expected in the short term, unless significant changes in the company’s strategy damage its income-generating profile or if there is material deterioration of current capital adequacy.

GoodRx Launches Exclusive Prescription Savings Program For AAA Members

GoodRx has announced a new partnership with AAA to offer its 59 million members exclusive access to coupons and discounts on prescribed medications at pharmacies nationwide.

To view and compare prescription prices, AAA members simply go to AAA.com/GoodRx. After entering their membership number, members will receive immediate access to GoodRx prescription discounts that provide best-in-market savings of up to 85%. By combining exclusive prices from GoodRx with AAA’s vast membership, more Americans than ever before are now able to access affordable medications.

“We’re thrilled to partner with AAA to offer their millions of members the best prices on medications,” said Jim Sheninger, SVP & Pharmacy Strategy Officer at GoodRx. “We've worked hard to build a deep network of low prices at thousands of pharmacies, and it's gratifying to be able to bring AAA members the savings they deserve."

The GoodRx Prescription Discounts program offers AAA members an additional savings of 5% to 10% beyond the already significant savings available to all consumers on GoodRx.com. GoodRx is able to accomplish this through exclusive partnerships that deliver the lowest negotiated discount rates directly to its users.

“We are always looking for ways to add new and relevant discounts to the AAA Discounts & Rewards program, so partnering with a best-in-class provider like GoodRx is a natural fit for us,” said Scott Denman, VP of Financial Services and Discounts & Rewards at AAA. “Rising healthcare costs are a major issue that our country is facing, and one that affects every one of our members. With this new program, we are delivering high value on prescription purchases, while also helping our members save on the cost of their membership and more.”

“GoodRx was founded with a mission to help every American, whether they have insurance or not, get the prescriptions they need at an affordable price,” said Doug Hirsch, co-CEO and co-founder of GoodRx. “We share with AAA a goal of bringing Americans ways to save money, and this partnership allows us to help more people than ever before.”

Since its founding in 2011, GoodRx has saved Americans more than $10 billion on their prescription medications, with $4 billion saved in 2018 alone. GoodRx partners with thousands of doctors, pharmacies and insurers across the U.S. to provide consumers with the best information and lowest prices for every FDA-approved medication.

AAA members can now use GoodRx Prescription Discounts at over 70,000 pharmacies in the U.S., including CVS, Walgreens, Walmart, Publix, Kroger, Costco, Giant Eagle, Schnucks, Albertsons, Duane Reade, Safeway and more.

For more information on the GoodRx Prescription Discounts program for AAA members, visit AAA.com/GoodRx

 

AM Best Affirms Credit Ratings Of Allianz SE And Rated Subsidiaries

AM Best has affirmed the Financial Strength Rating (FSR) of A+ (Superior) and the Long-Term Issuer Credit Ratings (Long-Term ICR) of “aa” of Allianz SE (Allianz) (Germany) and its rated subsidiaries (see below for the list of the companies)The outlook of these Credit Ratings (ratings) is stable.

The ratings reflect Allianz’s balance sheet strength, which AM Best categorises as strongest, as well as its strong operating performance, very favourable business profile and very strong enterprise risk management.

Allianz is one of the world’s largest insurance groups, with superior diversification by geography and business line, and leading positions in many developed and emerging markets, offering a complete range of life and non-life insurance products, as well as asset management services. Its competitive position is supported by its scale, strong management capabilities, dynamic strategy and strong brand.

AM Best expects Allianz’s consolidated risk-adjusted capitalisation, as measured by Best’s Capital Adequacy Ratio (BCAR), to be maintained at the strongest level, underpinned by a prudent capital management approach. Financial leverage and coverage ratios are supportive of the balance sheet strength assessment and financial flexibility is considered excellent due to the group’s good access to capital markets.

Allianz has a track record of strong and stable operating performance, supported by its diversified earnings profile. The group has produced a five-year weighted average return on equity of 10.8% (2014-2018) (as calculated by AM Best). The property/casualty segment has demonstrated consistently strong performance, reporting a five-year average combined ratio of 94.5%, supported by strong group-wide pricing capabilities. The life/health segment’s operating profit has seen five-year compound annual growth of 9.3%, reaching EUR 4.2 billion in 2018 despite a declining investment margin driven by the low interest rate environment. The group’s profitable and scalable asset management business continues to provide a good additional source of income (22% of the group’s operating profit in 2018). Prospective earnings are expected to remain strong over the medium term.

The FSR of A+ (Superior) and the Long-Term ICR of “aa” have been affirmed with stable outlooks for the following subsidiaries of Allianz SE:

  • Allianz Global Corporate & Specialty Resseguros Brasil S.A.
  • Allianz Global Corporate & Specialty SE
  • Allianz S.p.A
  • Allianz Risk Transfer AG
  • Allianz Risk Transfer (Bermuda) Limited
  • AWP P&C S.A.
  • Jefferson Insurance Company
  • AWP Health & Life S.A.
  • Allianz Global Risks US Insurance Company
  • Allianz Underwriters Insurance Company
  • AGCS Marine Insurance Company
  • American Automobile Insurance Company
  • Euler Hermes North America Insurance Company
  • National Surety Corporation
  • The American Insurance Company
  • Associated Indemnity Corporation
  • Chicago Insurance Company
  • Fireman’s Fund Insurance Company
  • Fireman’s Fund Indemnity Corporation
  • Interstate Fire & Casualty Company
  • Allianz Life Insurance Company of North America
  • Allianz Life Insurance Company of New York

The following Long-Term IRs have been affirmed with stable outlooks:

Allianz Finance II B.V. (debt issues are guaranteed by Allianz SE)—
-- “aa-” on EUR 2 billion 5.75% subordinated bonds, due 2041
-- “a+” on EUR 800 million 5.375% perpetual subordinated bonds
-- “aa” on EUR 750 million 3% senior unsecured bonds, due 2028
-- “aa” on GBP 750 million 4.5% senior unsecured bonds, due 2043
-- “aa” on EUR 1.5 billion 3.5% senior unsecured bonds, due 2022

Allianz SE—
-- “a+” on EUR 1.5 billion 4.75% perpetual subordinated bonds
-- “a+” on CHF 500 million 3.25% perpetual subordinated bonds
-- “a+” on USD 1 billion 5.5% perpetual subordinated bonds
-- “aa-” on EUR 1.5 billion 5.625% subordinated bonds, due 2042
-- “a+” on EUR 1.5 billion 3.375 perpetual junior subordinated bonds

Emergency Assistance Company Using App To Locate Travellers In Remote Regions

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These three random words saved the life of a British woman in Nepal after she fell and injured her head and shoulder, in below zero temperatures, while trekking at 4,500m in Dingboche en-route to Everest Base Camp. 

The adventurers husband called the emergency assistance number listed on their travel insurance policy to request help, but they were both disorientated and unsure of their exact location. 

Traveller Assist sent me a message via WhatsApp with a link to download the what3words app.” The 51-year-old former school teacher from Oxfordshire said. 

Within 90-seconds, Mr. Ward was able to send three words, that identified their location, to Traveller Assist who immediately dispatched a helicopter to rescue the patient and transport the couple to a hospital in Kathmandu.

I’m not very tech-savvy, but after clicking on the link that was sent to me, I had the app within a minute and it was very simple to use.” Mr. Ward said.

I’ve been telling everyone I know to download it because you just never know do you.”

what3words has divided the world into 3m x 3m squares, assigning three random words to each square, that helps users find their location with an accuracy of just 10 feet, and it’s quite literally saving lives. 

Danny Kaine, Head of Assistance at Traveller Assist and former British Army soldier said, “When travellers call us, they are often desperately sick, injured, scared and disorientated.” 

Recent cases where what3words has been used by Traveller Assist include a capsized yacht in the Caribbean, a diving accident in the Maldives, a terrorist attack in Somalia, a road traffic accident in Kenya and to pinpoint the exact pick-up point for helicopter evacuations in Haiti during violent protests and in the Bahamas before Hurricane Dorian hit. 

what3words has enabled our emergency call centre staff to locate travellers quicker and easier, saving time in the ‘golden hour’ of medical treatment,” Kaine said. 

Today people nearly always have their phone on them, and we need to use the tools like that, at our disposal to improve safety and potentially save lives. By using what3words, three dictionary words could mean the all-important few minutes between a safe recovery and something much worse ’ Added Chris Sheldrick, CEO and co-founder of what3words. 

 

Fox Flight Appoints Aaron Payne As Vice President

Fox Flight Air Ambulance has appointed Aaron Payne to the position of vice president.

A 14-year veteran of the company, Mr. Payne will be responsible for assisting the owner and senior management with the day-to-day operation of the business.

“Since starting my career at Fox Flight, I have developed a real passion for the company and for the medical repatriation business in general and I am excited to take on this new challenge,” said Payne. “To this point my role has been primarily mission-focused, so I am looking forward to learning more about the business side and helping the company grow and improve.”

“Aaron has been vital to Fox Flight’s success and we are pleased to add him to our senior management team,” said company president David Fox. “Aaron is a certified medical professional and he has gained a solid grounding in the medical and logistical aspects of medical repatriation, which are the core components of our business.”

Payne graduated from Conestoga College in Waterloo, Ontario, as a fully certified paramedic in 2004. He joined Fox Flight in February, 2005, and served for the next four years as an in-flight medical team member on air ambulance missions and as a nurse escort on commercial flight repatriations. Through his work as a hands-on medical team member, Payne gained a thorough understanding of the protocols and challenges surrounding medical repatriation missions.

In 2007, Payne took over management of the company’s dispatch department. In the role of communications director, he was responsible for quoting jobs, scheduling medical and flight teams, building flight itineraries, satisfying Customs and logistics requirements as well providing Command Center oversight and assistance during active missions. He would eventually take over responsibility for training and scheduling the four-person dispatch team.

In addition to his mission-focused duties at Fox Flight, Payne has also been active in recent years in the areas of business development and client relations. In this role he has been responsible for meeting face-to-face with both clients and service providers around the world to access their needs, promote Fox Flight services and address any issues that may arise with ongoing missions.

“I believe one of the most important aspects of our business is building good working relationships with clients and service providers,” said Payne.

“Good relationships with clients and service providers leads to better communication and smoother-running missions. That means a better repatriation experience for the patient and, hopefully, a better patient outcome in the end; and that’s what our business is all about.”

Keith Gibbs Joins Board Of Bluecrest Health Screening

Bluecrest Health Screening has appointed Keith Gibbs as an integral member of their board of directors. 

Gibbs joins the healthcare company's board following his departure from AXA PPP where he held the position of chief executive for 17 years.

From joining AXA in 2001, Gibbs successfully grew the business establishing it as a market leader in the healthcare space. Previous to this he held senior positions at some of the world's leading financial organisations including Citibank and Lloyds TSB, as well as building a successful consultancy business.

His new role at Bluecrest Health Screening will see Gibbs join the board alongside co-founders Peter Blencowe and Alex Higman. Supporting both the consumer and corporate sides of the business, Gibbs will focus on broadening Bluecrest's unique proposition whilst ensuring the board is effective in setting and implementing the business's overall strategy. With an exceptional level of experience within the health sector, he is able to give valuable commercial insight to further develop the business's corporate offering to provide more UK employers with affordable health screening packages for their workforce.

Peter Blencowe, managing director at Bluecrest Health Screening comments, "Keith is a pioneer in the health insurance sector and has a proven track record of developing innovative products and driving business growth.

"We're excited to welcome him to our board of directors, and are confident his unrivalled experience will be extremely valuable as Bluecrest Health Screening enters this new phase of growth."

Keith Gibbs comments on his appointment, "The future of healthcare is all about proactive management. Joining Bluecrest, a business which is ideally placed to succeed in the changing landscape, was an easy decision. I'm looking forward to working together to develop its strong health screening proposition to reach a wider business and consumer audience."

The announcement follows the latest news that Bluecrest Health Screening has received a £17m investment from private equity firm Vespa Capital.

Bluecrest Health Screening offers comprehensive health screening tests and has delivered results to over 250,000 customers across the largest network of mobile clinics in the UK and Ireland.

The business has achieved rapid growth since its launch in 2012 and is now being used by over 350 employers, who are able to carry out health screenings for their workforce at their premises, promoting employee wellbeing and increasing productivity.

For further information about Bluecrest Health Screening and its services please visit www.bluecrestscreening.com

Excellus BCBS Ramps Up Efforts To Curb E-Cigarette Use And Boost Education

Excellus BlueCross BlueShield's chief executive officer today ordered clarifications to its own workforce policies to ensure the current ban on smoking in the workplace of tobacco products also applies to non-tobacco products, as safety concerns are mounting regarding e-cigarettes and vaping.

"Most laws and workplace policies are historically oriented to tobacco-based products, so we thought it was worth the effort to draw attention to the safety concerns of e-cigarettes while also strengthening those policies we can control," said Chris Booth, the health plan's CEO.

The health plan provides its employees and its commercially insured members with a free program that offers nicotine replacement products (patches, lozenges and gum), counseling, medication recommendations and help guides.

Booth further directed the plan to broaden community education initiatives regarding the dangers of vaping, particularly among young people. "There's nothing hazy about the resolve of the state legislature and governor on the issue of vaping among young people," Booth said, citing a law that goes into effect in November that bans the sale of such products to anyone under the age of 21.

Excellus BCBS just issued a new educational poster, "E-Cigarettes: What You Need to Know About Vaping." The poster highlights findings from various surveys and experts who report that one in four New York high school students vaped in 2018, a rate that is 160 percent higher than what was reported in 2014. An animation of the poster's information can be viewed by clicking here.

"While scientists are still studying the long-term side effects of e-cigarettes, their use among young people can lead to chronic coughing, bronchitis and wheezing," said Stephen Cohen, M.D., senior vice president and corporate medical director. "This is a product that is way too easy to get and to get hooked on because of the addictive nature of nicotine."

The educational poster has been shared with the New York State Center for School Health and is now being distributed to school nurses throughout upstate New York. More than 100 posters have already been distributed to Onondaga County school nurses, for example.

The health plan's provider relations representatives are also in the process of delivering the educational posters to pediatrician offices throughout upstate New York as a method of reaching both parents and children.

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Medical, Travel And Technical Assistance

 

A guide to leading international medical and travel assistance companies and providers, operating within leisure, expatriate and corporate business travel markets globally.

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