Impact Of Health Care Legislation Hr 3962 On The Outsourcing Industry

President Barack Obama had a hard won victory on Saturday night (the 7-8th day of November 2009) when the landmark health care reform legislation (HR 3962) was passed with 220-215 votes. Now if everything goes the Obama way, then by the end of the year 09 Affordable Health Care for America Act would apply as a law impacting almost fifty million US lives. But what does this Act actually imply? How does it stand to impact an average US life? How does the Act affect the outsourcing industry at large? Through my article below I endeavor to answer these and many more questions.
Ab-initio we will refresh the fundamentals of federalism, stating the Roles, Duties, Nature, Scope and Restrictions on the government in a written federal constitution. Next we proceed to see whether the above attempt by the federal government to accede healthcare legislation is ultra-vires the powers granted by the US Constitution.

What is Federalism?

According to the traditional classification followed by the political scientists, constitutions are either unitary or federal. In a unitary constitution, the powers of the government are centralized in one government viz., the Central Government. In the federal constitution, on the contrary, there is a division of power between the federal and the state governments in a way that they are both inter-dependent and independent at the same time.
As we all know that Constitutions are organic documents which operate as fundamental law. The governments and their organs owe their origin to the constitution, derive their authority from the constitution and discharge their responsibilities within the framework of the constitution. The judiciary has the power to declare a law unconstitutional if the law is found to have contravened any provision of the constitution. The American Constitution is the oldest and a well praised example of federalism.

What are the powers granted by the US Constitution to the State Government?

Powers reserved for State Governments are:
Establishing local governments
Issuing licenses (driver, hunting, marriage, etc.)
Regulating intrastate commerce
Conducting elections
Ratifying amendments to the U.S. Constitution
Providing for public health and safety
Exercising powers which are neither delegated to the Federal Government nor were prohibited from the States by the Federal Constitution (residuary powers)
Framing other domestic law (for example, setting legal drinking and smoking ages etc.)

What are the powers granted by the US Constitution to the Federal Government?

Under the Constitution, powers reserved for the Federal Government are:
Printing of money
Declaration of war
Establishing the armed forces
Entering into treaties with foreign governments
Regulating commerce domestically and internationally
Establishing post offices and issuing postage
Making laws necessary to enforce the Constitution

What are the powers shared by Federal and State Government?

Under the Constitution, the shared, or “concurrent” powers are:
Setting up courts
Creating and collecting taxes
Building highways
Borrowing money
Making and enforcing laws
Chartering banks and corporations
Spending money for the betterment of the general welfare
Acquiring private property with appropriate compensation

What is the HR 3962 Act ?

The HR 3962 Act conceptualizes a new, voluntary, public, long-term care insurance program to help purchase services and support for people who have functional limitations. The Act endeavors to form a new national program to provide affordable coverage for those who cant get health insurance today because of pre-existing conditions. Under this, the insurance companies must spend 85 cents out of every premium dollar on medical services, thereby fostering the expansion of Medicaid and improving the Medicare. Under this, the young adults, till the age 26, are covered within their parents policies.

The Obama administration intends to attain this by creating mandates. As a self-sustaining public insurance option (that is financed not by tax dollars but by insurance premiums), this provides an alternative to and competes with private health insurance companies, on a level playing field. Additionally, the Act intends to eliminate the antitrust exemption for health insurers and medical malpractice insurers thereby fostering competition thus targeting the existing monopolies in the health insurance market. It aims to establish a new mandatory essential benefits package that shall become the minimum quality standard for employer plans, with the passage of time. The package places a cap for annual out-of-pocket spending, at a maximum of $5,000 per individual and $10,000 per family to prevent bankruptcies from medical expenses.

This Act requires the employers to either provide insurance to their employees or contribute to the cost of their coverage through the public plan/exchange, though the small businesses are exempted from this requirement.

Arguments regarding Constitutionality of HR 3962

The legal fraternity is divided between two schools of thought about the constitutionality of the Act. First school believes that the Act is unconstitutional and places reliance on Articles I 8 and V of the US constitution and on Tenth Amendment. They claim that their argument is supported by the celebrated case of MARBURY v. MADISON, 5 U.S. 137 (1803) and some federalist opinions. The second school of thought places reliance on Article I 8 and the celebrated case of McCulloh v. Maryland, 4 Wheaton 316 (1819); Steward Machine Co. v. Davis, 301 U.S. 548 (1937); United States v. Butler, 297 U.S. 1 (1936) and some federalist opinions. An in-toto analysis of these school of thoughts would conclude that the true interpretation of the word general welfare in Article I 8 of the U.S. Constitution can only determine the constitutionality of an Act like HR 3962. Till date the court opinions have been more inclined towards Hamilton (Federalist 33, 83 etc.) and Story rather than Madison (Federalist 41, 45 etc.).
Simply put, when the government mandates welfare as a quid-pro-quo for premiums collected, such welfare translates to nothing but a tax liability for the country men. Such an attempt by the government to regulate insurance sector by masquerading as an industry player is inspired from socialism. I personally feel that socialism is a Marxian concept and may not go well in an economy with capitalist foundations. The good thing is that people all over the world should buy insurance; this however turns bad when the government forces people to do so.

What are the implications of HR 3962 on the Outsourcing industry?

The object clause to the Act states that it is meant to provide affordable, quality health care for all Americans and reduce the growth in health care spending.

In reality, the act is a victim of haste. Ideally if the intention of the Obama administration and the object clause of the Act were actually in-sync then the administration should have awaited a confirmed indication of the end-of-recession. The administration should have first looked at strengthening the fundamentals of the economy, by:
better regulating the existing insurance sector,
improving the US agrarian culture and making the country self sufficient regards its food requirements,
checking the cost-of-living index and
creating more jobs in the private sector.
But if the intention is to make more and more Americans dependant on Federal Government for basic requirements, then the attempt is bang on.

Impact on the outsourcing industry:

Prima-facie it may seem complex but there are clear indications for the outsourcing industry to benefit once the HR 3962 is implemented. The benefit roots from the fact that the employees will become expensive for the employers post this Acts applicability. Now given the very competitive market scenarios, thin profit margin and the inability of the employer to transfer this increased cost to the end consumer, the employer is forced to search for the less costly alternatives. It is needless to say here that the Act magnifies the already existing labor arbitrage opportunities internationally. To appreciate the existing labor arbitrage opportunities you can refer to my older blog post.

Heart Rate Facts

What is heart rate? Heart rate (HR) is an indicator of heart’s work and is calculated as number of heart contractions (beats) in one minute (beats per minute – bpm). Individual heart rate is very much influenced by physical fitness of the person, genetics, age and environment.
Heart rate reserve – what is it? Heart rate reserve is the difference between the maximum heart rate and so called resting heart rate. If your maximum heart rate is 200 beats per minute (bpm) and your resting heart rate is 60 bpm, then your heart rate reserve is 140 beats per minute (200 – 60). Trained people usually have larger heart rate reserve than those who do no sports.
What is recovery heart rate? Recovery heart rate is the decreased heart rate measured after period of time after the training. For example if your heart rate immediately after the training was 185 beats per minute (bpm) and after 2 minutes your heart rate decreased to 110 bpm, then the 110 bpm represents your recovery heart rate. Together with maximum heart rate, recovery heart rate also helps to determine the intensity of your training.
How does the heart rate decrease after training? The time that the heart needs to decrease its rate to resting rate is individual. Typically, trained people do have higher maximum heart rates, their heart can work longer with higher heart rates, their resting heart rate is lower then the heart rate of an untrained individual and they need less time to reach resting heart rate. With semitrained person, the heart rate drops at least 20 beats per minute (e.g. 180 bpm during the training, 140 bpm or less after 2 minutes).
What is resting heart rate? Resting heart rate represents number of heart beats in one minute while you are at rest. The resting heart rate is best measured if you did not perform any activity for at least 10 minutes (standing up from the chair is considered an activity!), ideally after waking up the natural way, without an alarm (an alarm signal causes stress in organism and results in an increased heart rate) still resting on the bed.
What is maximum heart rate? Maximum heart rate represents the highest number of heart contractions a person can bear. As maximum heart rate can be truly measured only during a moderated stress test under physician’s supervision, you can estimate your maximum heart rate using the following formula: Maximum heart rate = 220 – age (in years); That means that if your actual age is 34 years, your maximum heart rate would be 186 bpm (220 – 34). The maximum heart rate of a trained person is higher than the maximum heart rate of the less fit person~Trained people usually have higher maximum heart rate than those who are less fit.
What is normal heart rate? There is nothing like average normal heart rate. A typical resting heart rate of a medium conditioned man is approximately 70 bpm. Genetics and mostly the physical fitness play a significant role. The resting heart rate of a well conditioned sportsman can be as low as 40 bpm as a trained heart Works more effectively.
What is a safe heart rate during the training? If your heart is healthy (means you never suffered from a heart disease or a heart attack) the safe range would be 70-80% of your maximum heart rate. This doesnt apply to people who are in cardiac rehabilitation, their exercise heart rate is limited at maximum 50-60% of their maximum heart rate.
What is the difference between Heart Rate and Heart Rate Variability? While heart rate refers to the number of times a heart contracts in one minute, heart rate variability refers to the beat-to-beat alterations in heart rate.

National Medical Search Group – A Physician Recruiter With A National Network

Though generally distressing, an economic recession can open windows of opportunity for an optimist. Some people might woefully bow to an economic downturn but a great many will see, instead, great chance to pursue a new position or career. When times become a little tough, some healthcare industry workers keep their eyes open for the right set of circumstances that could propel them into a new venture or practice. Employers in the healthcare industry would do well to seize upon this opportunity to recruit new employees.

National Medical Search Group is an agency that specializes in connecting talented medical professionals with successful medical employers. Networking with over 1000 medical recruiting offices across the United States, National Medical Search Group is a physician recruiter that yields appreciable results for its employer clients. Their well-trained and knowledgeable recruiting team have the skills to be able to efficiently interview and screen medical professionals, validate licenses and certifications, and conduct professional reference checks. After a recruiting drive to fill a temporary staffing gap or a permanent position, National Medical Search Group produces a short-list of highly qualified and available candidates.

Beyond their specialty as physician recruiters, National Medical Search Group also researches, screens and places skilled workers in various healthcare fields, including Healthcare IT, Nurses and Nurse Executives, Pharmacists, Nurse Practitioners and Physician Assistants. Their expert team of recruiters maintain connections across all these fields so as to be able to draw upon valuable pools of resources as positions become available. Without such a broad, national reservoir of talent from which to draw, even an exceptional employer would be challenged to find precisely the right person to fill a role.

As a physician recruiter, National Medical Search Group also partners well with Human Resources departments. Rather than expending time and money to laboriously find medical professionals available for hire, an HR department can make use of the extensive resources and expertise of the National Medical Search Group team to conduct the legwork and compile a list of potential candidates. The recruiting team contacts existing leads seeking interest and referrals; they utilize social networking sites, blogs, directories, and associations to generate leads; they make hundreds of cold calls to qualified leads to draw out the best talent available to fill a medical position. Whether seeking a permanent hire, a short-term staffer or a contingency solution, National Medical Search Group can fill the position.

National Medical Search Group prides itself on its commitment to employer and candidate privacy. No information is shared with other parties without the express consent to do so. National Medical Search Group is also proud to be members or affiliates with several ethnic groups and associations so as to ensure the diversity of their talent resources. A diverse and inclusive workplace is the cornerstone of business growth, and National Medical Search Groups physician recruiting practices reflect this maxim.

For more information or to find out how to place a job order visit NationalMedicalSearch.

The Evolution Of Healthcare Services & Software Development

How Healthcare Industry has evolved till now?

Digitization of the healthcare system has been an inevitable change just like in any other industry. Any organization when it expands, irrespective of the industry, needs to manage a lot of internal departments for coordination & smooth operations. In healthcare industry for example, there are a lot of challenges that requires the role of Healthcare Business Intelligence.

Adoption of IT came in different phases in the industry. Healthcare Software Development changed & improved with every phase.

The first phase brought technology into tasks which were repetitive and could do with standardization & automation like software for accounting & HR ( which includes payroll, hiring, reimbursements etc.).

Then came the phase where IT was evolved in two major ways. Firstly there was better coordination between various departments within an organization. And, secondly healthcare companies could easily integrate with their suppliers thus helping them a great deal in supply chain management. The healthcare application services & software that was introduced then may not have made an impact immediately, but was certainly a foundation for the healthcare software development in the years to come.

The third phase which is the ongoing phase for those looking after healthcare business intelligence. Many organizations have entered into this phase where there is complete digitization of processes & channels. The technology today has more power than in simply help in complete normal functions of an organization. technology has enabled people to do the tasks more valuable for them, letting the healthcare application services , say in the healthcare industry, take care of the rest.

The third phase focused more on the needs & convenience of the patients and less on the processes unlike the first two phases. This helped build a fully integrated & proper digitized healthcare system.
Now that even the patients are getting the hang of the healthcare IT system and in fact finding it more handy, it’s time institutions to get completely acquainted with technology and go all in.

It’s incorrect if hospitals and other healthcare institutes still believe that patients don’t want to utilize healthcare application services as it involves medical care which is a sensitive issue, and only use them specific cases. On the other hand, the lack of use of services is due to the nature of the services provided & not medical care. What is needed then isn’t a change of mindset, which has already taken place after the digitization of every other industry, but to bring improvement in the healthcare software development.

The Importance Of Hiring A Healthcare Services Company

Healthcare management services are essential for every business. In fact, getting health care plans for your employees will help you to improve productivity, efficiency, monetary efficiency, quality, patient and clinical satisfaction. A healthcare services company will generally provide strategies to businesses to improve their revenue by cutting back on medical expenses, company and clinical processes, accomplish regulatory compliance, and optimize the employees” safety. Such healthcare managed services are especially beneficial for organizations that keep on searching into options for new wellness details systems. They help organizations to assess the readiness of their infrastructure for wellness records as well as to implement more advanced clinical applications. However, it is also essential to contemplate the healthcare services as well as the health care plans you are availing and make periodical modifications to make it go smoothly.

Dealing with healthcare organizations is a tough job as it often requires implementing alterations within your data technology department. You need to rely much on the electronic infrastructure and ensure that it is operating smoothly and there is no down time. Any organization offering healthcare managed services is aware of these kinds of challenges; however, you can overcome them with appropriate health care plans.

The healthcare services company, in general, provides required training and information to your HR team so as to help them to deal with the compliance implementations that your organization is facing. Besides, providers of healthcare managed services help you to discover new ways for enhancing the system, allowing them to lower high-priced health care plans and boost revenue. As a result, you can assist streamline clinical processes as well as enhance the general safety of your people.
If you have not yet regarded the benefits of hiring a healthcare services company, here is another factor you would like to consider. It is not always possible for your in-house HR teams to remain updated about the compliance laws and regulations, which is very much essential for managing to streamline enterprise as well as for boosting revenues. The providers of healthcare managed services can help with those things and more.

Organizations that invest in healthcare managed services for their employees make a wise investment. They can expenses and at the same time increase the safety of their people, which further helps in employee retention. So if you have not yet considered providing healthcare managed services to your employees, it is time to do so.
Moreover, healthcare services company will help you to identify the weak points of your existing healthcare managed services and help you fix them with more suitable and cost-effective health care plans. However, it is essential to opt for a quality and professional healthcare services company that will study your organizational infrastructure and accordingly help you choose the best suitable health care plans for your people.