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News & Commentary
Content posted in September 2011
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The Fight Intensifies Against Health Care Insurance Fraud
Commentary  |  9/30/2011  | 
Too many insurers still accept fraud as a cost of doing business, or seek to curtail it using a set of rigid rules. Common sense tells us that it’s much more effective to stop fraudulent payments before they are made than to chase the money after the fact.
The Hanover Selects Cognizant for Remote Infrastructure Management
News  |  9/30/2011  | 
As the company becomes more of a 24/7 business, it has become more important to monitor its systems around the clock.
Market Delivers on Promise of Increased M&A
Commentary  |  9/29/2011  | 
The studies came fast and furious all summer: Expect more M&A activity in the insurance industry. Today, we saw two examples. What can IT departments expect?
Medical Protective to Buy Princeton Insurance from Medical Liability Mutual
News  |  9/29/2011  | 
Medical Liability Mutual is divesting itself of its New Jersey policyholders by selling Princeton to Berkshire Hathaway subsidiary Medical Protective.
Nationwide to Acquire Harleysville
News  |  9/29/2011  | 
Nationwide is hoping to gain more commercial lines presence with the buy, the company says.
BCBSNC, Allscripts Partner on EHRs
News  |  9/28/2011  | 
The companies are calling the initiative the North Carolina Program to Advance Technology for Health (NC PATH), which provides training and ongoing support for these practices to implement the certified EHR technology, and work towards achieving meaningful use status.
Insurers' Innovation Talk Is Cheap, CIO Says
Commentary  |  9/27/2011  | 
Proven technologies can help insurers entice customers, lower operational costs and develop innovative business processes, but caution tends to win over audacity when it comes to adopting those technologies.
Roy Woodall Confirmed as Financial Oversight Council's Insurance Expert
News  |  9/27/2011  | 
The industry and regulatory veteran takes a voting position in the body.
Aetna Selects Benefitfocus for Benefits Management
News  |  9/27/2011  | 
The platform unifies the experience for members, employers and brokers.
IPO Won't Change Guidewire's Independent Direction - CEO Marcus Ryu
News  |  9/26/2011  | 
In remarks at the vendor's user group conference in San Francisco, Ryu spoke of the company's growth, its possession of "the largest software engineering team dedicated to the P&C industry," and said a planned IPO would support the company's original goal to be a "long-term, standalone, independent company."
Guidewire Offers Richer Functionality with Enhancements to InsuranceSuite 7
News  |  9/26/2011  | 
In addition to enhancements to its PolicyCenter, ClaimCenter and BillingCenter offerings, Guidewire has launched modules for Client Data Management, Rating Management and Reinsurance Management.
OnStar in Hot Water Over Continuous Connection
Commentary  |  9/26/2011  | 
Politicians are calling for an investigation of the GM program after it announced that simply cancelling a subscription does not fully sever the link between company and customer. That's not what companies exploring usage-based insurance want to see.
Oh, the Youmanity! Aviva Touts Customer-Centricity in the Life Insurance Sector
Commentary  |  9/23/2011  | 
Much like Cigna's GO YOU program, Aviva's aggressive Youmanity campaign is supported by concrete technology initiatives, according to Aviva USA CIO Jeff Frazee.
Health Insurance Exchanges Change Game
News  |  9/23/2011  | 
Healthcare reform forces insurers to modernize their IT infrastructure and business processes, says health IT exec.
New York Life Promotes Ericksen to CIO
News  |  9/22/2011  | 
The former VP and CTO takes over for Eileen Slevin, who retired this month.
Cigna Rebrands as Individual-Centric
News  |  9/22/2011  | 
Cigna CIO says that the company's redefined focus on the individual customer will permeate every project the health insurer's IT organization will undertake.
Sea Change at CSC: What I Saw at the Connect for P&C Conference
Commentary  |  9/21/2011  | 
The modernization gesture that began with Java versions of key CSC applications has blossomed into a full-blown strategy dominated by forward-looking commitments.
Flood Insurance In Spotlight After Irene
Commentary  |  9/20/2011  | 
The formerly niche market for flood insurance is expanding after even landlocked states were deluged as Irene passed through
CSC Introduces FuturEdge Application Modernization Services Suite
News  |  9/20/2011  | 
The modular suite of services is designed to replace ad hoc, technology-focused decision-making with a business-led portfolio management strategy aimed at increasing agility, reducing costs and decreasing business and operational risk.
Insurers Are Missing the Boat on GenX, GenY - CSC Future Focus Panel
News  |  9/19/2011  | 
Insurers' incompetence at meeting customer expectations will likely drive younger generations into the arms of new entrants to the industry.
CSC Launches Cloud and SaaS Delivery for Exceed Billing Platform
News  |  9/19/2011  | 
The new delivery mode enables consumption-based pricing for Exceed Billing for P&C, life and annuity and health insurance carriers, while also bringing benefits of enhanced productivity, market agility and improved customer and agent satisfaction.
FirstBest Debuts Mobile Capabilities for Insurance Front Office Suite
News  |  9/16/2011  | 
The new mobile functionality as designed to enable field personnel to perform time-sensitive tasks remotely and securely, according to the vendor.
Would You Get a Health Insurance Quote At the Airport?
Commentary  |  9/16/2011  | 
Quoting is just one feature of an Independence Blue Cross kiosk aimed at engaging the individual healthcare market.
Bill Pieroni Named Marsh COO
News  |  9/15/2011  | 
Pieroni will be responsible for Marsh's global operations and will focus on the Marsh platform to maximize performance and delivery what the broker characterizes as superior, differentiated value for its clients.
XL Global Services to Consolidate Workers' Comp Business onto PCIS' CompVision
News  |  9/15/2011  | 
CompVision solution will support quotes, rating, policy issuance and transactions for all XL's workers' compensation business as of early 2012.
Mobile Advancements Lead to Rise in Usage-based Insurance
News  |  9/14/2011  | 
Two mobile device strengths -- ubiquity and GPS capabilities -- could contribute to a rise in usage-based insurance programs.
Insurers Re-Examine the Mobile Web
News  |  9/14/2011  | 
As the ways insurers' customers and employees use mobile devices is better understood, and as the number of devices proliferates, some carriers are turning back to the mobile web rather than apps to bring next-generation mobile capabilities to the marketplace.
CSC Acquires AppLabs Technologies
News  |  9/14/2011  | 
The strategic goal of the buy is to give CSC a footprint in the application testing services market.
AmeriHealth Mercy Deploys Mobile Provider Tools
News  |  9/13/2011  | 
The Medicaid administrator will roll out NaviNet's mobile patient information offerings to physicians in its network.
Penn National Upgrades to HP Exstream 8.0 For Real-Time, On-Demand Communications
News  |  9/13/2011  | 
A traditional user of HP Exstream for high-volume communications output, the insurer conducted a pilot that cut agents' transaction time to less than half, while reducing the need to code and cutting the network burden in half.
What Makes a Great iPad App?
News  |  9/12/2011  | 
I&T went straight to the experts to get the best practices for creating insurance iPad apps to optimize the tablet's unique talents.
The Best Insurance iPad Apps
Slideshows  |  9/12/2011  | 
Take a look at iPad apps from GEICO, Progressive, Humana, USAA, State Farm, Zurich, John Hancock and Aflac .
Wellpoint, IBM Announce Partnership Using Watson Technology
News  |  9/12/2011  | 
The computing system made famous during its run on Jeopardy! will help the health insurer with a physician-facing solution.
Capital BlueCross Unites Analytics and IT Under New CIO Mark Caron
News  |  9/12/2011  | 
The health insurance veteran speaks to Insurance & Technology about the opportunities to improve care by using predictive modeling and other informatics.
Ten Years After: Recollections of 9/11
Commentary  |  9/9/2011  | 
While drafting up my own memories of Sept. 11, 2001, I reached out to a few readers about their experiences and thoughts about the aftermath. What is your recollection of that day that will live in infamy?
Should We Treat Terror Like Other Catastrophes?
Commentary  |  9/9/2011  | 
The parallels between the past 24 hours in New York and the days immediately preceding Irene show how, in big cities, terror attacks seem to be viewed as an inevitability, for which insurers can model and prepare.
Other Views of 9/11's Effect on Insurance and IT
Commentary  |  9/9/2011  | 
With the 10th anniversary of the terrorist attacks coming this weekend, many are reflecting on changes from a decade ago.
What Has Changed in Insurance in 10 Years?
Commentary  |  9/9/2011  | 
The financial services industry survived, and has even thrived, in the 10 years after the 9/11 terrorist attacks. Technology played a key role in the industry’s recovery, as well as helping drive changes that came out of the insurance industry’s response to the tragedy.
Former Chubb Division COO Takes Over Top Underwiting Post at Homesite
News  |  9/8/2011  | 
Andrew McElwee will be responsible for the Boston-based carrier's underwriting profit in his new role as EVP and chief underwriting officer.
ACE Reaches Agreement to Acquire Penn Millers
News  |  9/8/2011  | 
The Zurich-based insurance group will acquire the Pennsylvania-based agriculture insurer.
Nationwide Indemnity Sticks with Innovation Group, Chooses Insurer Pyramid Workers' Comp Solution
News  |  9/8/2011  | 
Innovation Group's Insurer Pyramid is a new .NET version of the system the vendor gained through the 2001 acquisition of Pyramid.
Primerica to Offer Agents Analytics Via Mobile App
News  |  9/7/2011  | 
The company will implement Roambi Analytics so that its sales force can get IBM Cognos reports on iOS devices.
Atmospheric and Environmental Research Partners with NOAA on Hail Initiative
News  |  9/7/2011  | 
The partnership has resulted in the launch of AER Respond, which aims to help insurers to better manage hail claims.
Guidewire Files for IPO
News  |  9/6/2011  | 
J.P. Morgan Securities LLC, Deutsche Bank Securities and Citigroup will act as joint book-running managers for the offering.
Labor Day Weekend Catastrophe Roundup
Commentary  |  9/6/2011  | 
An active year for catastrophe events didn't take any time off for the holiday weekend.
Western World Insurance Group's Integrated Platform Drives Growth, New Opportunity
News  |  9/6/2011  | 
The carrier's surplus lines industry-first new business platform enables agents to underwrite, rate, quote, bind and issue policies.
Could the Insurance Industry Do What NOAA Does?
Commentary  |  9/2/2011  | 
If NOAA were seriously underfunded, could the insurance industry and others fund the equivalent of the Hurricane Hunters and other vital services?
Surprising Figures on Insurance Data Spending
Commentary  |  9/2/2011  | 
People always say that insurance is a data-intensive business. Then why it its data-related spending so low compared to other industries?
Making the Business Case: Focus on Products
News  |  9/2/2011  | 
An effective business case for a policy admin system investment focuses on the positive written premium and combined ratio impact on business results.
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