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BLAKE ADAMS — Practice pitfalls: Minor mistakes in Medicare enrollment can lead to major consequences for health-care providers

For the vast majority of health-care providers in Mississippi, Medicare reimbursement is an essential component of any practitioner’s or institution’s revenue stream. But let’s face it — no one likes dealing with Medicare enrollment forms. The byzantine paperwork and forms required to participate in the Medicare program (each identified by a jumble of letters and numbers such as the CMS-855A, ...

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IIAM’s new leadership

Durr Boyles of Boyles Moak Insurance Services in Ridgeland was recently elected Chairman of the Independent Insurance Agents of Mississippi. Durr’s previously was Vice-Chairman, Chairman-Elect, and as a Board and Executive Committee member. He began his career at Boyles & Moak, Inc. in 1984, and now is a principal in Boyles Moak Insurance Services. He has been on several industry ...

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Costs grow faster for states lacking Medicaid expansion

By BOBBY HARRISON Barely a word was spoken of possible Medicaid expansion recently during meetings of legislative working groups formed by House Speaker Philip Gunn and Lt. Gov. Tate Reeves to look at state’s revenue collections and expenditure. Instead, the focus of the working group dealing with Medicaid was the growth in the existing state program that Executive Director David Dzielak ...

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BILL CRAWFORD: Mississippi needs every federal dollar it can get

Let’s get real.    Ignore political ideology for a moment.   Mississippi is a poor state, persistently landing near the bottom on income, health, and education rankings. Many families depend heavily on federal benefits to survive. So, too does state government (44 percent of total spending). Many small businesses’ survival depends heavily on federally subsidized families and government.   Yes, federal ...

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Mississippi medical center receives record obesity grant

The University of Mississippi Medical Center has been awarded a record-high grant to study obesity, one of the state’s most pressing health issues. Medical center officials said in a news release Thursday that it will receive $19.9 million over five years from the National Institutes of Health to fund the Mississippi Center for Clinical and Translational Research. The new center ...

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Feds, state still in talks about exchange insurer replacement

By JACK WEATHERLY  As of Monday, the federal government had not certified another health insurer for the Mississippi insurance exchange, state Insurance Commissioner Mike Chaney said. The months-long effort to gain certification of the insurer is facing increasing pressure as UnitedHealthcare will pull its coverage from the exchange at the end of the year. Chaney said in an interview that ...

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Shempert presented honor

Debbie Shempert of Renasant Insurance in Tupelo has received the JH Johnson Award from the Independent Insurance Agents of Mississippi. Shempert has worked with Renasant Insurance since May 2000, serving as Sr. Vice President/Operations & Compliance. Prior to joining Renasant Insurance, she was president of a Tupelo insurance group. Debbie is a certified hospice volunteer and contributes to her community ...

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State approves rate jump for 1 of 2 health exchange insurers

Mississippi’s insurance commissioner has approved a rate increase of 43 percent, on average, for one of two health insurers selling policies on the health exchange created under the federal health care overhaul. Commissioner Mike Chaney said Thursday he approved the increase, beginning Jan. 1, for Kentucky-based Humana because actuaries project a sharp increase in costs and he feared Humana would ...

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BOBBY HARRISON: Taxes make possible the best of government work

A reader emailed to point out that while reporting that the 3 percent tax on insurance premiums was a growing source of revenue for a beleaguered state budget, I did not explain that the levy most likely was resulting in people having to pay more for insurance. Granted, taxes do not occur in a vacuum. They cost somebody extra money ...

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West Point woman arraigned on insurance, wire fraud charges

Attorney General Jim Hood says a 27-year-old West Point woman faces charges of insurance fraud and wire fraud. Hood said in a news release Tuesday Georgenna Edwards was indicted in April by a Clay County grand jury on one count of insurance fraud and one count of wire fraud. She was formally charged Monday. The indictment alleges that Edwards submitted ...

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