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CVS to force out smokers and obese workers

by James Denison / March 20, 2013 2:53 PM PDT

Pretty much what it seems to be eventually, because if they don't lose the weight and they don't quit smoking, they will lose pay and likely be laid off eventually. Isn't that interesting? You aren't supposed to discriminate against certain immoral types who work for you, but can against the obese and the smokers. People can't be judged anymore on just their job performance.

CVS to hassle smokers and fatties.
"CVS Caremark (CVS) has put its employees on notice that they need to reveal their weight or pay a monthly $50 penalty. "Avoid
the $600 annual surcharge," CVS warns its employees who use the
company's health insurance plan. They've been told they are required by
May 1 to show up to a doctor for an annual WebMD (WBMD) Wellness Review and submit to tests for blood sugar, blood pressure, cholesterol and body mass and body weight.

Smokers working for CVS are also warned: "You must either be
tobacco-free by May 1, 2014, or participate in the WebMD tobacco
cessation program." Defiant smokers can avoid penalties if they are
healthy enough in other categories specified by the company.

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IF they are paying for your healthcare
by JP Bill / March 20, 2013 8:42 PM PDT

they set the rules...don't like the rules....Get your own healthcare plan and stay employed with CVS..and they don't give a rats ***.

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by JP Bill / March 20, 2013 9:23 PM PDT

CVS insists that the use of health screenings by employer-sponsored health plans is a common practice. A quick search of the Internet shows many websites and message boards filled with questions from families asking if similar programs and policies are legal.

Brad Seff, a former Broward County, Fla., employee, learned the hard way that it is legal, according to one court. Seff sued the county in April 2011 after it charged him an extra $40 per month for health insurance after he refused health screenings.

In the suit, Seff said the wellness program violated the Americans With Disabilities Act because the county was making medical inquires of its employees. Seff lost his suit.

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private vs public vs employer
by James Denison / March 21, 2013 12:36 AM PDT

Health information should be only between the person, the doctor, and the insurance company, and not part of any employer's information systems. Part of the problem is insurance companies compartmentalizing the risk of health care instead of doing what was done in the past and spread more across all employers with the same charges per person per plan. At some time they came up with the idea of using less broad based statistics to decide on health care cost per person or family. No doubt some employers with younger, healthier workers complained they were paying a higher amount due to other employers who had older, overweight, smoking employees working for them.

In the ideal world for insurers, they'd be the lucky company with all the youngest healthiest insured at the highest price they could charge them.

I wonder what would happen to an economy that outlawed ALL insurance, medical, auto, home, etc? While certain individuals would suffer worse if they had a loss of auto in wreck or home due to fire, the amount of money paid basically for "risk" which for the most part means for "nothing" could then be devoted to more productive enterprises or purchases. It might also encourage people to drive better, eat and live better, exercise more, and do things of a personal nature to alleviate that risk rather than saying "insurance will cover it".

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RE: Health information should be only between the person,
by JP Bill / March 21, 2013 12:51 AM PDT

Health information should be only between the person, the doctor, and the insurance company,

So they ALL go for the exam...ALL the results of ALL the employees go to the insurance company, the insurance company sends a report to the Employer saying we will insure these named employees for this much per year, and we will insure these other named employees for this much per year.

The employer knows 2 different rates, doesn't know EXACTLY WHY the second group is charged more, just that their rate is higher.

Do you object to someone that has been convicted of drunk driving paying more for insurance than you do, or would you pay a bit extra so they didn't have to pay higher insurance? Think of Rush complaining about paying for birth control pills.

If you exercised more you'd be driving less

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Let me give you Josh's answer
by James Denison / March 21, 2013 1:32 AM PDT

Drunk driving is a crime. Over eating and smoking isn't a crime.

Now, answer me this. If everyone had to pay their own health insurance from what they earned (which means their paycheck would increase), then what conceivable reason could an employer have for discriminating based on weight or being a smoker (when away from workplace)?

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RE: for discriminating based on weight or being a smoker
by JP Bill / March 21, 2013 1:53 AM PDT

for discriminating based on weight or being a smoker (when away from workplace)?

They can eat all they want...just don't show up at work weighing any more than you did when you left work the day before, when you had a BMI of less than 27?

CVS isn't discriminating....it's telling them IF they want to have insurance through them they the insurance company is going to charge them more. They can get their own insurance.

then what conceivable reason could an employer have for discriminating based on weight or being a smoker (when away from workplace)?

Would you go to a fitness centre where people working there are 150 lbs overweight and smelling of tobacco?

Don't insurance companies have something about Pre-existing Conditions in their Policies? THEY want to know what they're singing you up for.

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People count?
by James Denison / March 21, 2013 2:10 AM PDT
"Would you go to a fitness centre where people working there are 150 lbs overweight and smelling of tobacco?"

Why not? I've been to doctor's offices in past where the doctor and several nurses were overweight and one I remember was a smoker too. I've been to dentist who don't have perfect teeth but have bridges and other dental work themselves. My mother had very good cancer surgery from a very obese female doctor in the late 80's, enabling her to live another 16 years through much of 2004. While personal appearance and health concious decisions might help in some job places, in others it shouldn't even be a consideration. Ringing up customers at a pharmacy counter or even the front counter shouldn't have any effect on customer perceptions, especially since they don't personally manufacture the goods sold there. More than a lean, svelt, marathon runner serving me on purchasing my pharma at times, I'd prefer someone of a good nature any day instead.
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Much Ado about nothing.
by JP Bill / March 21, 2013 4:12 AM PDT
In reply to: People count?

At CVS, company officials say those who use the company's healthcare have until May 1, 2014 to visit a doctor and measure weight, height, blood pressure and other levels.

If you don't, you pay an extra $600 a year.

"It's getting mixed reviews," said one Knoxville CVS employee who did not want his identity revealed.

He says it's a major topic of conversation at work.

"They're worried that they are going to use it against them," he said, about employees opposed to the idea.

"The other side pretty much thinks it's a good way to get people in the workplace healthier," he said, about those for the idea.

CVS says it's "benefits program is evolving to help our colleagues take more responsibility for improving their health and managing health associated costs."

Those in health administration say a focus on physical well-being is increasingly becoming a priority for companies.

"We know there needs to be a cultural change in America. Obesity is one of the largest things we have to tackle," McAnally said.

CVS says the program is voluntary.

However, you obviously pay more if you don't do it.

They also say they don't actually see the test results, because those numbers are sent to an independent company.

You wouldn't happen to have a link to the actual notice that's being sent around would you?

Would you pay $600/year to prevent someone from knowing you're overweight?...When they could just look at you and figure it out for themselves?

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do you regard smoking and overeating as simple
by Roger NC / March 21, 2013 7:31 AM PDT

personal will failure?

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smoking yes,
by James Denison / March 21, 2013 9:03 AM PDT

but weight gain can be for various reasons, not all due to eating more food than the next person.

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yes, but I doubt it's a large percentage
by Roger NC / March 21, 2013 9:59 AM PDT
In reply to: smoking yes,

that is actually endocrine malfunctions.

It's more likely psychological than phisiology in a majority of people fat like me. Naturally slow metabolisms do make it a harder problem.

So you feel cigarette smoking is only a mental weakness? but you're willing to doubt that even most obesity is the same?

Wasn't there a story recently about how food manufacturer's were designing their foods to be more additive? But then again, claiming that is denying personal responsibility, looking to blame someone else for personal faults. Isn't that the rule?

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(NT) what would happen? more suicide
by Roger NC / March 21, 2013 7:30 AM PDT
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Or like before, neighbors
by James Denison / March 21, 2013 9:04 AM PDT

and local philanthropy help the person out, showing them people care.

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and impoverishing families helping each other out?
by Roger NC / March 21, 2013 10:02 AM PDT

Neighbors will bring you covered dishes, they'll sell chicken plates to raise money, they're not going to cover years of continuing health care.

I know so pretty good folks, that would and do help people a lot, but to support disabled for years?

You must have some heluva neighbors at least.

But what of those without family? or whose neighbors are dirt poor too? too bad?

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It wasn't all that long ago
by TONI H / March 20, 2013 9:32 PM PDT

that it was actually against the law on a Federal level to discriminate against an obese person when hiring. Wonder whatever happened to THAT law because I don't recall ever seeing anything about it being repealed. If it hasn't been, then I can see a slew of lawsuits raining down on CVS corporate heads.

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RE: I can see a slew of lawsuits
by JP Bill / March 20, 2013 9:53 PM PDT

Again with the lawsuits?

I haven't anything about those other lawsuits lately.

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by James Denison / March 21, 2013 12:40 AM PDT

became an existence "tax". You are expected and forced to pay a tax for existence. Now we see the next step in which some will be expected to pay a higher price for existing, and under Obamacare punished for resisting.

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