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Benefits Bits: CIGNA: Wellpoint: Others

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CIGNA Corp. says it will offer the Healthy Rewards discount program to holders of life, accident and disability coverage as well as to health plan members.

Access to the discount program will be free of charge to consumers who already have CIGNA coverage, according to CIGNA, Philadelphia.

The program provides discounts of up to 60% on weight loss programs, chiropractic care, acupuncture, fitness club memberships, and other health-related goods and services.

In other benefits news:

- WellPoint Inc., Indianapolis, says it will use Health Management Corp., Richmond, Va., a subsidiary, to offer a voluntary care management program for health plan members who have bipolar disorder.

WellPoint began testing the program in California and Colorado, then made the program available in Georgia, Indiana, Kentucky, Missouri, Nebraska, Ohio and Wisconsin in the fourth quarter of 2008, the company says.

Program staffers remind members to fill prescriptions, maintain the members’ refill and case management histories, and use pharmacy claims to identify members who may be late in refilling prescriptions.

- University Benefit Plans Inc., Boston, says it will be offering the Universal Dental Plan discount plan program to Massachusetts nonprofits that agree to let Universal Benefits serve as broker of record for their employee benefits.

Universal Dental Plan has about 160 dental offices in its provider network.

- The Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association, Chicago, has joined with 3 other groups to form the 5010 Testing Project.

The consortium will work with the federal Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services to develop and test efforts to implement the new 5010 HIPAA transaction standards.

The standards implement provisions of the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 that are supposed to encourage the rise of health care and health insurance computer systems that can communicate with one another.

The standards involved are the Committee on Operating Rules for Information Exchange Phase I and II rules certification testing scripts; an interoperability framework; and interoperability specifications.

The other testing consortium members are the Council for Affordable Quality Healthcare, Washington; the Healthcare Information and Management Systems Society, Chicago; and the Integrating the Healthcare Enterprise Initiative, Chicago.

- Asparity Decision Solutions Inc., Durham, N.C., the maker of the health plan comparison Web tool, says it will sell health plans information about how members of the Federal Employees Health Benefits Program responded after they used the tool during the 2009 open-enrollment season.


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