Health Care Reform Overview

Although the entire U.S. health care system is undergoing unprecedented change as a result of the Affordable Care Act (ACA), NetApp has taken steps to manage costs while still providing comprehensive coverage. We’re offering the Health Savings Plan, along with tools and education to help you manage your expenses, and providing you with opportunities to build savings for the future.

You have an important role to play as well. Getting the best value and managing your costs require your active participation. It’s more than just enrolling in a plan—it’s about choosing the quality programs that are right for you and your family, and accessing the right programs when and where you need them.

One action you’ll need to take in early 2016 is to watch for a new tax form. The ACA requires every American to have health insurance—and just like you have paperwork to prove you have auto insurance, you now need a form to prove that you have health insurance. The 1095 Form is a tax document, similar to your W-2, that gives the IRS information about your health insurance. It helps the government verify that your coverage meets the requirements under the ACA.

1095 Form—what you need to know

The 1095 is a tax form that proves to the IRS that you have health insurance. It’s also how we show that the health insurance we offer meets government standards. The great news is that NetApp’s plans exceed government standards.

There are two types of the 1095 that may impact you. All employees will get the 1095-C Form, which you’ll be able to access online if you register with the Benefits Service Center by December 31, 2015. If you’re enrolled in the Kaiser or HMSA plan, you’ll also receive a 1095-B Form, which will be mailed to your home.

To register to receive a notification when your 1095-C Form is ready, log in to mybenefits.netapp.com and follow these steps:

  1. Click on the Access Medical Tax Form link on the right-hand side.
  2. Complete the fields under Contact Information.
  3. Under Notification Options, indicate how you would like to be notified—via email or text—when your 1095-C Form is available.
  4. Select Save Notification Option Settings.

You’ll receive an electronic notification when your request is processed.

If you do not register by December 31, 2015, your 1095-C Form will be mailed to you by January 31, 2016 (please allow 7 to 10 days for mailing). However, if you misplace the form and need an additional copy, you will need to call to request a new one. For this reason, we strongly encourage you to take a few minutes to register now so that you have real-time access to the form when you’re ready to file your taxes.

When you receive your forms, check them for accuracy (pay special attention to the names, addresses and Social Security numbers for all individuals covered under your health care plans) and then hold onto them. You’ll need them to file your 2015 taxes.

If you have general questions about the 1095, or specific questions about which version(s) to use when filing your 2015 taxes, contact the IRS at irs.gov.

If you see errors on your 1095 Form or don’t receive yours by March 2016, please contact the Benefits Service Center at 1 888 7HRBENS (1 888 747 2367).

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Affordable Care Act (ACA) basics

The Affordable Care Act (ACA), also known as health care reform, was signed into law by President Obama in 2010 and represents the biggest change to the nation’s health care system since the 1970s. Most significantly, under ACA:

  • Everyone can get coverage. As of January 1, 2014, insurance companies cannot exclude people from coverage because of pre-existing health conditions.
  • Everyone must get coverage. Effective January 1, 2014, all Americans must have medical coverage or pay a fine. Every American must have a baseline level of coverage, known as minimum essential coverage—NetApp’s medical plans meet all of these requirements. So, as long as you are enrolled in a NetApp-sponsored medical plan, you’ll meet the requirements.
  • Benefits cannot be capped. ACA changes health insurance rules so that there are now no annual or lifetime limits on essential health benefits.

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What the ACA means to NetApp

ACA imposes many new requirements on employers. Health care reform impacts NetApp in three main ways:

  1. Our plans will be more heavily regulated. Health care reform puts in place many new rules. Some are one-time changes, but others require annual monitoring and administrative duties. Both translate into more resources we must spend to comply with the rules. In other words, we must divert some resources that can’t be spent on employees.
  2. We have new costs. New taxes on large employers, as well as indirect taxes levied on insurance companies and medical equipment providers, also mean higher overall costs for our plans.
  3. The health care landscape will keep changing. At the same time health care reform happened, new companies, programs and technologies have emerged to help you interact with the health care system.

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How the U.S. health care system is imperfect

Despite offering patients the latest medical breakthroughs and access to world-class technology, our health care system is imperfect. There are four big reasons why:

  • We require more care. Even with our first-world resources, Americans aren’t that healthy. Many of us—from children to middle-aged adults—have chronic conditions that require regular doctor visits or daily prescriptions. Aging Baby Boomers, who are more susceptible to injury and illness, make up a large percentage of the overall population, adding to demand for care.
  • Too much care, and not always the right care, is common. The price of a common surgery can vary by thousands of dollars. When prices vary so much—and without clear data on the best, most cost-effective treatments—it’s hard for doctors or patients to make good decisions. As a result, medical experts say patients sometimes get health care they don’t need.
  • The system is imperfect—in a number of ways. First, most doctors and hospitals are paid in accordance to the volume of services they provide, not necessarily for the quality or outcome produced. So providers are incentivized to give more care, resulting in much of it being unnecessary. Second, patients don’t always seek care at the most efficient or effective spot. The most common example is overuse of the emergency room for routine care, but doctor shortages and too many specialists also contribute to the problem. Third, the people seeking care are not the ones paying for it. So, individuals have little understanding of the actual costs and are insulated when prices rise. And when insurance companies, hospitals or provider groups consolidate, the normal market forces don’t work to bring down costs as in most other economic sectors.
  • Insurance regulation and tax policy has unintended consequences. As you know, your medical plan contributions are deducted from your paycheck before taxes—a tax break that isn’t available to Americans who buy coverage on their own. This uneven playing field distorts costs. At the same time, the risk for being sued by a patient causes many professionals to practice medicine in a defensive way. Doctors or hospital groups may suggest tests and procedures to protect themselves in case they are sued.

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Health Insurance Marketplace—“Exchanges”

You've seen information about the Health Insurance Marketplace, also called “exchanges.” The Marketplace is intended for people who can’t get affordable, mini mum essential coverage through their employer. You can shop for health care in the marketplace. However, since our employees have affordable coverage available through NetApp, you will not likely find a better deal on the exchange.

Read NetApp's Health Insurance Marketplace Coverage Options and Your Health Coverage [PDF].

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What you can do

Understanding health care reform will take time. As you learn and think about what the law means to you and your family, your everyday actions matter.

  • Take care of yourself. Use the benefits through NetApp’s medical plans and the Employee Assistance Program to help you get and stay healthy. Make sure you and your family members also get appropriate preventive care.
  • Develop a strong relationship with your doctor. He or she has your best interests at heart, but works in an imperfect system. Here’s what primary doctors wish you knew [PDF].
  • Keep learning. Stay curious about ways to better interact with the system. When you are an informed consumer, change happens. Explore ways to get the most from your benefits, including saving on medical costs and prescription drugs.
  • Understand your benefits. That’s what www.netappbenefits.com is all about!

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