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Empowering Plans: P168 – “Drafting” Plan Exclusions

On August 4, 2023
In this episode of Empowering Plans, Andrew Silverio and Kevin Brady discuss the unanticipated costs of playing pickleball and then “draft” their favorite (and least favorite) plan limitations and exclusions. Let us know who you think had the better picks!

Expanding Protections for Breastfeeding Mothers

On August 3, 2023
So far this year, we have seen two notable advancements in protections for breastfeeding mothers in the workplace. The first of which includes the expansion of women’s preventive services under the Affordable Care Act (ACA). Based on new recommendations by the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA), breastfeeding mothers will no longer have to pay out-of-pocket costs for particular breast pumps and related supplies. The HRSA specifically noted that access to double electric breast pumps should be prioritized and should not be treated as a secondary step if manual pumps are unsuccessful. In addition to the double electric breast pumps, the preventive service recommendation includes coverage for the pump parts, maintenance of the pumps, and supplementary equipment for women needing additional services or for women who have faced breastfeeding complications. Plans subject to the ACA and its preventive care mandate must cover these new additions to women’s preventive services with no cost sharing.

Diapers & Wipes Reflection

On August 3, 2023
As my family and I look forward to celebrating our daughter Kinsley’s first birthday this Sunday, we have revisited some of our fond memories and challenges in our first year as a family of five. In doing so, we have discussed how helpful Phia’s “Diapers and Wipes” program has been to our family.

Benefest 2023: Talking Costs and Laws with Carriers

On July 31, 2023
By March, amidst the snowbanks contracting and days growing incrementally longer, conference season – at least for the healthcare industry -- is in full bloom. One of the marquee Massachusetts-based healthcare conferences, Benefest 2023, focused on “shaping the future of healthcare” in the commonwealth, was held earlier this summer at Worcester’s Polar Park -- during the peak of conference season.

Empowering Plans: P167 – Who is a Fiduciary and Does it Even Matter? Lawsuits Abound!

On July 21, 2023
In this episode of Empowering Plans, The Phia Group’s Chief Legal Officer – Ron Peck – and Sr. VP of Consulting – Jennifer McCormick, analyze recent lawsuits involving self-funded plan sponsors and their third party administrators, and accusations of fiduciary breach on the part of TPAs. We delve into whether TPAs can be fiduciaries, what this means, and whether it even matters when it comes down to how administrators manage plans. Finally, are plan sponsors signing contracts enabling TPAs to do things contrary to ERISA, and who is to blame when this is the case? Anyone and everyone handling self-funded plan assets needs to tune into this one!

The Phia Group's 3rd Quarter 2023 Newsletter

On July 17, 2023
The Phia Group is off to a great start in the third quarter of 2023! Check out our newsletter to get acquainted with some of the latest happenings in our neck of the woods.

IDR Entities Still Struggling with Volume – Highlights from the Q4 2022 Report

On July 17, 2023
Under the No Surprises Act (NSA), the Departments of Health and Human Services, Labor, and Treasury are required to post quarterly data on the Federal Independent Dispute Resolution (IDR) process. In response to the federal court decision in Texas Medical Association, et al. v. United States Department of Health and Human Services, portions of the governing regulations were vacated, resulting in a February 10, 2023 order for IDR entities to cease issuing new payment determinations (see This was lifted as of February 24, 2023 for services furnished before October 25, 2022, and as of March 17, 2023 for services furnished on or after October 25, 2022. Because there was essentially a freeze on IDR proceedings for a good portion of Quarter 1 of 2023, the report issued for Quarter 4 of 2022, available at, is the most recent and complete picture we have of how the process is performing.

Illuminated by Phia Ignite! Leveraging A/I and Multifaceted Price and Quality Data

On July 11, 2023
Benefit plans are struggling with the No Surprises Act, are overburdened by disproportionate expenses, and are butting heads with stop-loss over inadequate risk disclosures and network terms. Meanwhile, too many are ignoring modern technology, and are overdependent on cost data while ignoring quality metrics. Join The Phia Group’s leadership team as they present and dissect case studies addressing regulatory compliance, claim appeals, and dispute resolution. From the NSA and IDR, to transparency rules and provider pricing, The Phia Group’s best and brightest will show you a defensible payment strategy with Phia Ignite, as well as determine what role artificial intelligence will play. Drive costs down and address today’s most pressing industry issues by registering for this complimentary webinar. There are sure to be some fireworks!

The Stacks – 3rd Quarter 2023 Newsletter

On July 7, 2023
This is "The Stacks" from The Phia Group's 3rd Quarter 2023 Newsletter

Empowering Plans: P166 – Delving Into Dobbs, One Year In

On July 7, 2023
In the latest episode of Empowering Plans, attorneys Nick Bonds and Kendall Jackson discuss the changes that have occurred in the past year following the Supreme Court’s decision in Dobbs. How will new abortion laws affect self-funded plans and what are the implications for their participants? Tune in to learn how plans can navigate these changes.

One Year Post-Dobbs Decision

On July 5, 2023
June 27, 2023 marked one year since the Supreme Court of the United States (SCOTUS) overturned the constitutional right to abortion in the case of Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization. Over the last 12 months, half of the states have passed some type of abortion restriction or complete ban and many more are in the process of creating legislation. Some of these laws include the possibility for civil or criminal penalties against women who obtain abortions, doctors who perform abortions, or even individuals who, broadly, facilitate abortions.

The Phia Group and Healthcare Recovery Solutions (HRS) Join Forces to Empower Healthcare Payers in Recovering Lost Dollars from PFAS, PFOA and PFOS Payouts

On June 29, 2023
The Phia Group, a distinguished leader in healthcare cost containment, and Healthcare Recovery Solutions (HRS), a prominent healthcare mass tort subrogation expert, announce their most recent and pressing initiative. In response to an environmental crisis in the US, our team is launching a robust initiative to provide unparalleled recovery solutions for healthcare payer clients. Through the integration of our unique and exclusive capabilities, including patented, state-of-the-art mass tort data analytics and subrogation recovery specialists, we will offer an extraordinary opportunity for clients to identify and recover medical costs associated with toxic chemicals known as PFAS, PFOA and PFOS.

Empowering Plans: P165 – Artificial Intelligence Meets Subrogation

On June 26, 2023
We are halfway through 2023, and Artificial Intelligence (AI) remains one of the year’s hottest topics, particularly in the worlds of business and healthcare. In the latest edition of The Phia Group’s Empowering Plans podcast, Attorneys Jon Jablon and Cindy Merrell zero in on how AI could have a monumental impact on the field of subrogation within the larger context of healthcare law.

Merck vs. Biden

On June 23, 2023
The globally recognized, multi-billion-dollar pharmaceutical company Merck & Co. sued the U.S. government on June 6th in an effort to halt the Medicare drug price negotiation program contained in the Inflation Reduction Act. The drug negotiation program aims to form agreements with drugmakers to lower costs on their most expensive drugs, which will save billions of dollars for Americans, particularly those on Medicare, while sapping Big Pharma of billions in potential revenue. In the first attempt by a drugmaker to challenge the law, Merck is pushing to be declared exempt from the drug price negotiation program, which they claim would lower their drug prices by 25 to 60 percent below market value.

What Happens When Auto and Health Insurance Collide?

On June 20, 2023
I remember when I graduated college, I was in the early stages of adulthood and my parents told me that I needed to get my own car insurance. Beyond knowing that my monthly bills were going up, I had little understanding about car insurance other than it was required and it provided protection in the event of an accident. After over a decade of practicing, law I have found that most adults (not just recent college graduates) do not actually know or understand their own auto coverage. Even fewer adults know how auto insurance and health benefits may intersect in the event of an auto collision.