Getting Americans to Stop Using Phones While Driving

Insurance Journal | April 29, 2019

The distracted driving report by Zendrive, a traffic-data startup, makes it clearer and clearer each year that millions of Americans can’t stop themselves from talking, texting and livestreaming—yes, even using FaceTime—while driving. The results have been increasingly unsettling, showing that drivers in the U.S. are becoming more likely to use their smartphones more often. This year, in a new twist, the company took the usage data from the tens of millions of cellphones it monitors and combined it with a self-assessment to the same drivers: Are you good at focusing on the road? The worrying verdict: American drivers have no idea how often they use their phones. The most distracted drivers in Zendrive’s sample gave themselves high marks for paying attention, with roughly one-third of the worst multi-taskers considering themselves “extremely safe.” “It’s just terrifying,” said Zendrive Chief Executive Office Jonathan Matus. “We’ve built these highly addictive experiences and people can’t help themselves.” Matus should know—he helped design Facebook’s mobile app before launching Zendrive, a service intended to help insurance companies and fleet managers identify bad drivers. Basically, he’s now trying to short-circuit all of the work he did in his previous job to hook us to our phones.

Spotlight

BCG’s Insurance Global Leader Pia Tischhauser discusses innovation in the South East Asia insurance market with Managing Director and Partner Prae Dumrongmongcolgul in Bangkok. Prae explains that many insurers in South East Asia are now focusing on putting the customer at the center. They are also using technologies such as AI and IOT to disrupt their traditional models and become more efficient. Filmed as part of the Pia Tischhauser on the Road series.


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INSURANCE TECHNOLOGY

U.S. Insurance Commissioners Endorse Internationally Recognized Climate Risk Disclosure Standard for Insurance Companies

naic.org | April 11, 2022

A bipartisan group of state insurance regulators led by Insurance Commissioners Ricardo Lara of California and David Altmaier of Florida adopted a new standard for insurance companies to report their climate-related risks, in alignment with the international Task Force on Climate-Related Financial Disclosures (TCFD). The TCFD standard is the international benchmark for climate risk disclosure and will help insurance regulators and the public to better understand the climate-related risks to the U.S. insurance market, which is the largest in the world. This announcement during the National Association of Insurance Commissioners' (NAIC) spring meeting in Kansas City, Missouri, puts U.S. state insurance regulators on the forefront of climate risk disclosure to protect consumers. Commissioners Lara and Altmaier are co-chairs of the NAIC Climate Risk & Resiliency Task Force (Task Force), which was established in 2020 to coordinate all of the NAIC's domestic and international efforts on climate-related risk and resiliency issues. The Task Force developed the new TCFD-aligned survey over a 14-month public participation process led by Oregon Insurance Commissioner Andrew Stolfi and Rhode Island Superintendent Elizabeth Dwyer in coordination with Commissioners Lara and Altmaier, and marks the first update to the NAIC's Climate Risk Disclosure Survey approach since it was created in 2010. The Task Force determined that implementing a TCFD-aligned disclosure framework would enhance transparency about how insurance companies manage climate-related risks and opportunities and incorporate international best practices, among other benefits that the Task Force identified in the new standard. Insurance regulators from France, Switzerland, and the United Kingdom currently require TCFD-aligned reports. U.S. financial regulators such as the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission are also taking steps toward requiring TCFD-aligned disclosures for other financial institutions. Our global climate crisis affects every state, requiring us to reach across partisan divides to find solutions that protect all people, By holding insurance companies to this global standard for climate disclosure, insurance regulators are showing the power of united leadership in our efforts to address climate change and reduce the negative impacts on insurance consumers." California Insurance Commissioner Ricardo Lara. The NAIC's action shows that our system of state-based insurance regulation remains strong and flexible in responding to changing conditions in our markets and our world, Thank you to my fellow regulators for your commitment to work together to protect consumers." Florida Insurance Commissioner David Altmaier. We have all been affected by climate-related events, including wildfires, floods, and increased extreme weather. The first NAIC climate risk survey, created more than 10 years ago, led the way at the time, and it's great to see the NAIC lead again by being the first U.S. financial system regulator to adopt TCFD-aligned disclosure requirements, I'm grateful for the robust participation in this process over the past year and the strong support to adopt internationally aligned climate risk disclosures, and I look forward to continuing our work by supporting insurers in shifting to this new reporting framework." Oregon Insurance Commissioner Andrew Stolfi. Aligning U.S. insurance companies' climate disclosures with the global norm is a major step forward to protect financial markets and consumers who rely on insurance for safety and security, The bipartisan leadership of Commissioner Lara of California and Commissioner Altmaier of Florida is in short supply around the globe. It is needed more than ever before as we address climate-related financial risks across investment portfolios and global supply chains." Steven Rothstein, Managing Director, Ceres Accelerator for Sustainable Capital Markets

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ANNUITIES

King Insurance expands into Georgia with the acquisition of Piedmont Insurance Associates

King | December 24, 2021

King Insurance ("King" or the "Company"), a fast-growing full-service insurance brokerage firm that provides a variety of property & casualty as well as employee benefits solutions, announced the acquisition of Piedmont Insurance Associates ("Piedmont"). Piedmont has offices in Covington, GA and Newnan, GA and marks King's first expansion outside of Florida. Piedmont's roots go back to 1948 when it was the Spillers Agency and today is led by David Wilson and Phil Boswell, each of whom merged their respective agencies together in the mid 90's to form Piedmont. Piedmont is a full-service agency offering insurance products to commercial and personal lines customers from its lineup of top-tier insurance carrier partners. Phil, David and their team will continue operating out of their current locations. "We are excited to expand into Georgia with such a high-quality agency, This is an important milestone for us as we execute on our strategy to be a major player in the Southeast." -Chad King, Chief Executive Officer of King Insurance. This acquisition marks King's eleventh acquisition over the past year and the fourth since the Company's partnership with BHMS Investments, LP. The Company plans to continue to broaden its footprint across the southeastern U.S. and expects to announce a number of important acquisitions in the upcoming months. About King: Founded in 1974 and headquartered in Gainesville, Florida, King is a full-service insurance brokerage firm which provides a broad array of property & casualty and employee benefits solutions.

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HEALTH INSURANCE

HealthSmart® Launches DFW SmartCare™ Health Plan

HealthSmart | May 20, 2022

HealthSmart, one of the nation's largest third party administrators of health plans for employers and plan sponsors, announced the launch of DFW SmartCare™, a comprehensive level-funded health plan that offers market leading discounts to DFW-area small to mid-sized employers. The plan offers significant savings and protection for plan sponsors and features access to the Baylor Scott & White Quality Alliance (BSWQA), inclusive of Catalyst Health Network (CHN). BSWQA is a clinically integrated network of hospitals, facilities, and doctors that members can access through Employers Health Network (EHN). DFW SmartCare delivers a transparent, all-inclusive model that offers predictable costs through a level-funded plan with no additional risk for employers and significantly lower premiums than mainstream fully-insured programs. The program also offers financial security with stop loss coverage to protect plans from catastrophic claims. In addition to a comprehensive health benefits plan, DFW SmartCare boasts a superior member experience through its Concierge Advisor Team who works to guide members and help them navigate their healthcare journey every step of the way. This new health plan designed especially for the DFW Metroplex is a perfect example of how HealthSmart approaches our organizational mission of reducing costs for plan sponsors and delivering premium healthcare solutions to our members, This program demonstrates an innovative approach to help plan sponsors in North Texas control their health benefit costs by providing deeply discounted access to the BSWQA clinically integrated network through EHN.This is big news for DFW small and medium employer groups and DFW SmartCare is truly a game-changer for our broker community in terms of providing quality healthcare options with deep discounts." Craig Julien, CEO for HealthSmart. Plan sponsors typically must work with several players to build their health plans, By bringing together experts in the areas of most concern to small and mid-sized plan sponsors, we have created a one-stop solution that offers a top-quality, focused provider network, critical stop loss coverage, and comprehensive third-party administration services, relieving area health plan sponsors of the burden of shopping for these services individually." Omar Haedo, president of Elan Insurance Group About HealthSmart HealthSmart is one of the largest third party administrators in the country and the premier provider of innovative, customizable and scalable healthcare solutions for employers, brokers and payers. We partner with plan sponsors to provide key services needed to reduce healthcare costs and manage members with dignity and respect. HealthSmart is the one-stop source for health plan needs, including health plan benefit administration, pharmacy benefit management, care management and wellness programs and provider networks.

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CLAIMS

eAssist Dental Solutions Exceeds $1 Billion Insurance Collections for Dental Practices Nationwide in 2021

eAssist Dental Solutions | January 03, 2022

eAssist Dental Solutions, the nation's leading platform for remote dental billing and patient billing services for dental offices, closes 2021 with an A-Plus scorecard across its current client base of more than 2000 general and specialty dental practices, as well as Dental Service Organizations (DSOs). "This year's metrics tell a great story, but the real story is about the people who achieved them, It takes experience, skill, commitment, and tenacity to fulfill our brand promise by collecting 100% of what is rightfully owed to each of our clients. It's not easy. Our dedicated teams and proprietary technology are the best in the business, and our collective results clearly reflect that. I could not be more grateful or more thankful to the dedicated professionals who work so hard to bring peace of mind to practice owners in the form of stronger cash flow, simplified operations and reduced stress." -co-founder James Anderson, DMD. The eAssist platform supports dental billing professionals working remotely across the country. The vetting process to join the eAssist platform includes a rigorous assessment of job knowledge, technical/software acumen, communication and team skills, and entrepreneurial spirit. Only about 35% of applicants meet eAssist's high expectations. Culture fit is also essential, as stated on their website: "To join eAssist, you must align with our purpose, our mission and our values. We're looking for incredible people who are positive, ambitious, servant leaders, caring, growth-oriented and motivated to do the right thing – for fellow team members, for our clients, for the company, and for you." While 2021 results were the best in the company's 13-year history, eAssist's rapid growth trajectory has been acknowledged consistently over the past six years. This year eAssist was named as a fastest growing private company by Inc 5000 for the sixth consecutive year, by MountainWest Capital Network for the fifth year, by Utah Business for the fourth year, and by Financial Times a second time. eAssist also received the HIPAA Seal of Compliance issued by the Compliancy Group. Especially gratifying to the company's management is that eAssist was once again Certified™ as a Great Place to Work®, and named by Great Place to Work® and Fortune as one of America's Best Workplaces in Health Care & Biopharma™, with 92% of employees rating eAssist as a great place to work – 6 points higher than the average U.S. company. About eAssist Dental Solutions eAssist Dental Solutions, a Henry Schein company, is the nation's leading platform for remote dental billing and patient billing services for dental offices. eAssist serves over 2000 dental practices through a unique proprietary technology platform that connects dental practices to vetted dental billing professionals, allowing practice owners to fully outsource their billing department using the eAssist platform. The end-to-end solution enhances a dental practice's revenue cycle management and eases the burden on office staff, ultimately helping practices be more efficient, profitable, and patient-focused.

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Spotlight

BCG’s Insurance Global Leader Pia Tischhauser discusses innovation in the South East Asia insurance market with Managing Director and Partner Prae Dumrongmongcolgul in Bangkok. Prae explains that many insurers in South East Asia are now focusing on putting the customer at the center. They are also using technologies such as AI and IOT to disrupt their traditional models and become more efficient. Filmed as part of the Pia Tischhauser on the Road series.

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