CVS to require employees to disclose personal information

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March 19, 2013, 5:57 pm
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(NECN: Jennifer Eagan) - CVS Caremark employees have a choice to make.

The company is asking for more medical information from them, and they can either report data like their weight, body fat and glucose levels to the insurer or reportedly pay a $600 annual penalty. 

For some who don’t work for the company, it sounds like a tough pill to swallow. 

"I think that is an invasion of privacy," one man in Sudbury said. "That’s personal information."

But Patty Houpt, the Executive Director of the New England Employee Benefits Council, says it is part of a growing trend. Many companies feel they have exhausted their options when it comes to curbing healthcare costs.  

"In healthcare, your employer can’t afford to pay for everything carte blanche, open checkbook. They need to ask employees to participate and to take responsibility," Houpt said.

CVS Caremark released a statement saying in part, "An initial step to accomplish this goal is a health screening and wellness review so that colleagues know their key health metrics in order to take action to improve their numbers, if necessary."

CVS Caremark is based in Rhode Island and employs 200,000 people. Houpt says we can expect to see the spectrum of who pays what for healthcare widen. Under the Affordable Healthcare Act, there can be up to a 30 percent premium differential for wellness and incentives. 

"You’re going to see more and more of that and potentially it could be up to 50 percent. Money talks, money talks for employee benefits," added Houpt.

CVS Caremark says they want employees to be better informed about their own health and the health data is kept private by a third party administrator, never shared directly with the company.

Tags: rhode island, Jennifer Eagan, health insurance, CVS, body fat, CVS Pharmacy
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