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March 31, 2010

Actuaries Plan Ahead to Health Reform Implementation

WASHINGTON, March 24 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- With the enactment of health care reform legislation yesterday, the American Academy of Actuaries said the successful implementation of this and forthcoming reconciliation legislation will require coordinated efforts to ensure that the regulatory development process accomplishes the intended goals of reform. The actuaries plan to work with regulatory authorities as they begin implementing reform legislation to meet its goals of increasing the availability and affordability of coverage, enhancing the quality of care, and addressing health spending growth.

"Health care reform legislation has been passed, but many of the details regarding implementation need to be worked out at both the federal and state levels," said Cori Uccello, the senior health fellow for the American Academy of Actuaries. "Actuarial expertise will be essential in the development of new regulations if the insurance market is to successfully implement health care reform."

In the near term the actuaries will focus on the reform provisions that take effect most immediately, including the new medical loss ratio requirements that will apply to insurers in the individual and group markets. To calculate loss ratios, the value of benefits received by policyholders is divided by the premiums paid. But Uccello said that, "There are countless technical issues regarding how to define benefits and premiums that will need to be worked out."

The actuaries will also focus on forthcoming regulations regarding market reforms that will become effective in 2014. Uccello said that actuaries will work with regulators to structure health insurance exchanges and implement the individual health insurance coverage mandate to successfully reduce adverse selection.

For more information or to schedule an interview with Cori Uccello, please contact Andrew Simonelli, assistant director of communications for the American Academy of Actuaries, at 202.785.7872. For more information on the American Academy of Actuaries, please visit: www.actuary.org.

The American Academy of Actuaries is a 16,000-member professional association whose mission is to serve the public on behalf of the U.S. actuarial profession. The Academy assists public policymakers on all levels by providing leadership, objective expertise, and actuarial advice on risk and financial security issues. The Academy also sets qualification, practice, and professionalism standards for actuaries in the United States.

Available Topic Expert(s): For information on the listed expert(s), click appropriate link.

Cori E. Uccello


SOURCE American Academy of Actuaries

Posted by Tom Troceen at 02:46 AM

Sun Life Financial U.S. Names Larry Madge Senior Vice President, Chief Actuary

The U.S. division of Sun Life Financial Inc. today announced that Larry Madge has been named Senior Vice President and Chief Actuary. He will be responsible for strengthening actuarial processes and controls as well as improving forecasting in order to achieve more stable earnings.

"We are excited to have Larry rejoin Sun Life Financial," said Thompson. "Larry's deep knowledge of our organization and his broad actuarial and financial experience fits well with our focus of enhancing our financial and risk management capabilities."

Madge returns to the Sun Life Financial organization from AEGON Canada, where he served as Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer. Prior to that, he spent more than 22 years with Clarica/Sun Life Financial Canada, most recently as Vice President and Chief Actuary. He will report to Wes Thompson, President, Sun Life Financial U.S. and Keith Gubbay, Senior Vice President and Chief Actuary, Sun Life Financial. He replaces Gubbay as chief actuary of Sun Life Financial U.S.

In his most recent role at Sun Life Financial Canada, Madge was responsible for all actuarial reporting and analysis across the Individual, Group Benefits and Group Retirement business units. He also held leadership positions in the Individual Product Development, Retail Life Insurance, Retail Customer Solutions and Insurance Products areas.

"Larry not only offers us technical expertise, he knows Sun Life Financial," said Gubbay. "He brings extensive experience in multiple lines of business and is very knowledgeable in emerging financial accounting and risk management approaches."

Posted by Tom Troceen at 02:39 AM

San Diego to look for actuary

San Diego City Employees’ Retirement System will launch an RFP to hire an independent actuarial firm to validate the results of the 2009 valuations.

Cheiron has been the $4.3 billion system’s actuary since 2005. Board rules adopted in 2008 require the system to hire an independent actuary if the system has the same actuary for more than five consecutive years.

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Posted by Tom Troceen at 02:37 AM

Wellmark premium increase delayed by Governor Chet Culver

Governor Chet Culver is injecting himself in the middle of a dispute about Wellmark’s plan to raise the price of health insurance premiums by 18 percent, on average, for about 80,000 Iowans.

Culver has directed the state insurance commissioner to “stay” the premium increase. He’s calling for “a third party, independent actuary” to review the matter and determine whether the rate increases are justified. Rob Schweers, a spokesman for Wellmark, says his company doesn’t object.

“We intend to cooperate fully with the insurance commissioner in an independent, actuarial review of the data that supports our recent, individual rate increases in the individual, under 65 market,” Schweers says. “And by individual, we’re talking about people who buy their own policy as opposed to people who have a group policy through their employer.”

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Posted by Tom Troceen at 02:23 AM

Aon Consulting to buy JP Morgan retirement unit


Aon Consulting said Friday it agreed to buy a division of JPMorgan Chase & Co.'s retirement unit for an undisclosed amount.

JP Morgan Compensation and Benefit Strategies, a division of JP Morgan Retirement Plan Services LLC, provides compensation, retirement and health care actuarial services.

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Posted by Tom Troceen at 02:17 AM