Calif. Insurers Owe Millions In Rebates To Small Businesses
The Los Angeles Times reports that Blue Shield of California and Anthem Blue Cross owe small business customers more than $35 million in rebates as a result of the health law's requirements. Meanwhile, Wellpoint announces it will improve its customer Web apps to avoid losing market share as millions shop for new coverage later this year.
Los Angeles Times: Blue Shield, Anthem Owe Small Firms Millions Of Dollars In Rebates
Blue Shield of California owes $24.5 million in rebates to thousands of small-business customers, and rival Anthem Blue Cross will return $12 million to small firms under requirements of the federal healthcare law. The annual rebates were disclosed in reports to state regulators, and the final tally from some companies may change before they are paid out by Aug. 1 (Terhune, 6/4).
The Wall Street Journal’s CIO Journal: WellPoint Tries To Avoid Another Mobile 'Crapplication'
Health insurer WellPoint Inc. acknowledged Monday that it does a poor job of designing consumer mobile applications, and will work with more experienced companies to improve the usability of applications intended for use by its customers. WellPoint expects that approximately 30 million people will start signing up for insurance plans in October 2013 under the Affordable Care Act, and it could well lose market share to competing insurers if consumers don't like its apps. That's no vain concern – its first mobile application, released last December, was widely panned by Apple Inc. and Google Android consumers – an experience Rickey Tang, vice president, chief architect and chief technology officer at WellPoint, called "humbling" (King, 6/3).
Also in the news --
Reuters: Start-Up Tries Tapping Market Of Uninsured Dental Patients
While many healthcare startups are hoping the new healthcare law going into effect next year will help drive more business their way, dental network Brighter believes being left out of the law will help it more. Dental services for adults are not part of the Affordable Care Act, which Brighter founder and chief executive Jake Winebaum believes could encourage more businesses to drop their existing dental-care coverage. That could help Brighter win customers, he says (6/3).