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2016 Medical Cost Trends and Implications: PwC Research Behind the Numbers 
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PwC’s Health Research Institute (HRI) projects U.S. medical inflation will dip to 6.5 percent in 2016, capping a ten-year trend of slowing employer medical cost-trend growth in the employer-sponsored market.  It is critical for stakeholders positioning themselves for 2016 and beyond to consider and address the associated trends and implications are shaping the New Health Economy.

Despite the year-over-year slowdown, HRI also reported that medical inflation still outpaces general inflation, underscoring the challenges ahead for the health industry. After accounting for likely changes in benefit design, such as higher deductibles and narrow networks, HRI projects a net growth rate of 4.5 percent in 2016.

Two factors PwC will discuss in detail that "inflate" the medical cost trend in 2016: (1) New specialty drugs entering the market in 2015 and 2016 will continue to push health spending growth upward; and (2) Major cyber-security breaches are forcing health companies to step up investments to guard personal health data, adding to the overall cost of delivering care. in addition, PwC will discuss four key cost growth factors HRI has observed over the past decade.

PwC will also address three factors that serve to "deflate" the 2016 medical cost trend: (1) The Affordable Care Act’s looming “Cadillac tax” on high-priced plans which is accelerating cost-shifting from employers to employees to reduce costs; (2) Greater adoption of “virtual care” technology that can be more efficient and convenient than traditional medical care; and (3) New health advisers helping to steer consumers to more efficient healthcare.

PwC will explore how the New Health Economy is reshaping the landscape for employer-based health insurance plans that continue to cover most Americans, in which consumers have more plan choices than ever before, but at the same time, the pressure on employers to control their health budgets means that employees are having to pick up more of their healthcare tab than ever before.

Each year, PwC's HRI provides estimates on the growth of private medical costs over the next year and what the leading drivers of that shift are expected to be. Insurance companies use medical cost trend to help set premiums by estimating what the same health plan this year would cost the following year. In turn, employers use the information to make adjustments in benefit design to help offset cost increases.

In compiling data for 2016, HRI interviewed industry executives, health policy experts, and health plan actuaries whose companies cover a combined 100 million members. HRI also analyzed results from PwC’s 2016 Touchstone Survey of more than 1,000 employers from 35 industries.

Please join us Wednesday, July 15th, 2015 at 2:00 PM Eastern as Benjamin Isgur, Director of PwC's Health Research Institute takes us behind the numbers to examine employer 2016 medical cost trends and implications for stakeholders. He will discuss in detail PwC research findings, expand on individual factors that will "deflate" and inflate components of the medical cost trend for 2016, and address strategic implications for health plans, providers, employers, consumers and other stakeholders.
Learning Objectives
Participants will be able to:
  1. Explore PwC research data findings from the Behind the Numbers 2016 Medical Cost Trend Report and PwC's 2015 Health and Well-Being Touchstone Survey.
  2. Ascertain the trends and implications for Employers, Plans, Providers and other applicable stakeholders regarding PwC research findings.
  3. Understand the forces behind the primary deflators and inflators driving current medical cost trends
  4. Consider how the New Health Economy is reshaping the landscape for employer-based health insurance plans.
  5. Engage in interactive learning through online question submission, attendee feedback and opportunity for follow up questions, and networking with attendees, faculty and other professionals through dedicated LinkedIn group
Who Should Attend

Interested attendees would include:

  • C-Suite Executives
  • Health Benefit Executives and Staff
  • Policy, Health Reform and Regulatory Affairs Executives and Staff
  • Human Resources Executives
  • Strategy and Planning Executives and Staff
  • Marketing Executives
  • Business Development Executives
  • Actuarial Executives and Staff
  • Business Intelligence Staff
  • Informatics and Analytics Executives and Staff
  • Other Interested Parties

Attendees would represent organizations including:

  • Employers
  • Health Plans 
  • Hospitals and Health Systems
  • Provider Networks and Accountable Care Organizations
  • Third Party Administrators
  • Agents and Benefit Consulting Organizations
  • Pharmaceutical Organizations
  • PBMs
  • Solutions Providers 
  • Associations, Institutes and Research Organizations 
  • Media
  • Other Interested Organizations
2016 Medical Cost Trends & Implications: PwC Research Behind the Numbers 
  Individual Registration Fee: $195. webinar flash drive with video syncing slides and recorded audio, plus presentation pdf file: $45 for attendees; $260 for non-attendees after the event. Register online or download the event brochure.
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Ben Isgur

Benjamin Isgur
PWC’s Health Research Institute

  Benjamin Isgur is a Director of PwC's Health Research Institute. As a Director, Mr. Isgur develops national and global thought leadership and research initiatives for the firm and clients. HRI is a dedicated research group that provides new intelligence, perspective, and analysis on major health-related business issues. He also consults with healthcare systems, trade associations, and policy groups on strategic planning, and industry intelligence and trends.

Mr. Isgur has worked extensively with health policy and industry associations including, American Hospital Association (AHA), Texas Hospital Association (THA), Indiana Health and Hospital Association (IHHA), Healthcare Financial Management Association (HFMA), Assisted Living Federation of America (ALFA), Pharmaceutical Care Management Association (PCMA), Texas Institute of Health Policy Research (TIHPR), and the California Healthcare Foundation (CHCF).

Mr. Isgur has published numerous reports and spoken on health subjects such as, government health policy, workforce strategies, hospital charity care and community benefit, consumerism, and the digital hospital environment. Prior to joining PwC he worked in government relations, legislative and regulatory consulting, and policy analysis in Texas, Washington D.C. and internationally. He received a Master of Public Affairs from the Lyndon B. Johnson School of Public Affairs, University of Texas at Austin and a Bachelor of Arts, Government and Middle Eastern Studies from the University of Texas at Austin.

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