Gym membership coverage: A potential double-edged sword for the insurance market

Some private insurers participating in the Medicare Advantage program have begun offering gym memberships as a way to encourage older consumers to stay healthy and active. While many consider this to be good news, others say that the practice is a double-edged sword. Inclusion of gym memberships may signal that insurers are attempting to procure the healthiest individuals while leaving the high-risk policies in the hands of the Medicare program. This practice may have an impact on how health insurance exchanges. These state-run insurance programs will provide limitless coverage to…

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Rates for Medicare Advantage to fall as enrollment soars

Rebuking the notion that health insurance premiums will reach new highs as a result of the Affordable Care Act, the Obama administration spoke with reporters on Thursday and insisted that premiums for Medicare Advantage policies will fall in 2012. Medicare Advantage is one of the more popular federal health care plans and boasts of lower deductibles than other insurance programs. The program accounts for only a quarter of the 48 million policies currently in effect through Medicare. Officials also noted that they expect to see enrollment rates for the program…

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