The dual eligible population is a strategic area of focus for us and we are leveraging the capabilities of our integrated care delivery model, including care management programs particularly as they relate to chronic conditions, to expand our services to this population. Only those who have 20 years in uniform - which could be active or reserve service, or a combination of both - would qualify. B An adopted child whose adoption has been legally completed on or before the child's twenty-first 21st birthday; or. We are focused on proactive clinical outreach and member engagement. The current war against terrorism has rekindled interest in extending franchise opportunities to military veterans. However, before the mids, it typically took 10 years; and before the Employee Retirement Income Security Act was passed in , many companies provided pensions only if you worked for them until you retired.
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Permanent on most hard-to-mark surfaces. We may also face increased competition due to participation by other insurers in the health insurance exchanges implemented under the Health Care Reform Law.
We believe that barriers to entry in our markets are not substantial, so the addition of new competitors can occur relatively easily, and customers enjoy significant flexibility in moving between competitors. Contracts for the sale of commercial products are generally bid upon or renewed annually. While health plans compete on the basis of many factors, including service and the quality and depth of provider networks, we expect that price will continue to be a significant basis of competition.
In addition to the challenge of controlling health care costs, we face intense competitive pressure to contain premium prices. Factors such as business consolidations, strategic alliances, legislative reform, and marketing practices create pressure to contain premium price increases, despite being faced with increasing medical costs.
The policies and decisions of the federal and state governments regarding the Medicare, military, and Medicaid programs in which we participate have a substantial impact on our profitability. These governmental policies and decisions, which we cannot predict with certainty, directly shape the premiums or other revenues to us under the programs, the eligibility and enrollment of our members, the services we provide to our members, and our administrative, health care services, and other costs associated with these programs.
Legislative or regulatory actions, such as those resulting in a reduction in premium payments to us, an increase in our cost of administrative and health care services, or additional fees, taxes or assessments, may have a material adverse effect on our results of operations, financial position, and cash flows.
Table of Contents Premium increases, introduction of new product designs, and our relationships with our providers in various markets, among other issues, could also affect our membership levels. Other actions that could affect membership levels include our possible exit from or entrance into Medicare or commercial markets, or the termination of a large contract. If we do not compete effectively in our markets, if we set rates too high or too low in highly competitive markets to keep or increase our market share, if membership does not increase as we expect, if membership declines, or if we lose membership with favorable medical cost experience while retaining or increasing membership with unfavorable medical cost experience, our results of operations, financial position, and cash flows may be materially adversely affected.
If we fail to effectively implement our operational and strategic initiatives, including our Medicare initiatives, our state-based contracts strategy, and our participation in the new health insurance exchanges, our business may be materially adversely affected, which is of particular importance given the concentration of our revenues in these products. This strategy includes opportunities created by the expansion of our Medicare programs, including our HMO, PPO, and stand-alone PDP products, the successful implementation of our integrated care delivery model, our strategy with respect to state-based contracts, including those covering members dually eligible for the Medicare and Medicaid programs, and our participation in health insurance exchanges.
We have made substantial investments in the Medicare program to enhance our ability to participate in these programs. Over the last few years we have increased the size of our Medicare geographic reach through expanded Medicare product offerings. We are offering both the stand-alone Medicare prescription drug coverage and Medicare Advantage health plan with prescription drug coverage in addition to our other product offerings.
We offer the Medicare prescription drug plan in 50 states as well as Puerto Rico and the District of Columbia. The growth of our Medicare products is an important part of our business strategy. Any failure to achieve this growth may have a material adverse effect on our results of operations, financial position, or cash flows. In addition, the expansion of our Medicare products in relation to our other businesses may intensify the risks to us inherent in Medicare products. These expansion efforts may result in less diversification of our revenue stream and increased risks associated with operating in a highly regulated industry, as discussed further below.
This Medicare-Medicaid Coordination Office has initiated a series of state demonstration projects to experiment with better coordination of care between Medicare and Medicaid. Depending upon the results of those demonstration projects, CMS may change the way in which dual eligibles are serviced. If we are unable to implement our strategic initiatives to address the dual eligibles opportunity, including our participation in state-based contracts, or if our initiatives are not successful at attracting or retaining dual eligible members, our business may be materially adversely affected.
Additionally, our strategy includes the growth of our commercial products, including participation in the new health insurance exchanges, introduction of new products and benefit designs, including HumanaVitality and other wellness products, growth of our specialty products such as dental, vision and other supplemental products, the adoption of new technologies, development of adjacent businesses, and the integration of acquired businesses and contracts.
There can be no assurance that we will be able to successfully implement our operational and strategic initiatives, including implementing our integrated care delivery model, that are intended to position us for future. Table of Contents growth or that the products we design will be accepted or adopted in the time periods assumed. Failure to implement this strategy may result in a material adverse effect on our results of operations, financial position, and cash flows. If we fail to properly maintain the integrity of our data, to strategically implement new information systems, to protect our proprietary rights to our systems, or to defend against cybersecurity attacks, our business may be materially adversely affected.
Our business depends significantly on effective information systems and the integrity and timeliness of the data we use to run our business. Our business strategy involves providing members and providers with easy to use products that leverage our information to meet their needs. Our ability to adequately price our products and services, provide effective and efficient service to our customers, and to timely and accurately report our financial results depends significantly on the integrity of the data in our information systems.
As a result of our past and on-going acquisition activities, we have acquired additional information systems. We have reduced the number of systems we operate, have upgraded and expanded our information systems capabilities, and are gradually migrating existing business to fewer systems. Our information systems require an ongoing commitment of significant resources to maintain, protect, and enhance existing systems and develop new systems to keep pace with continuing changes in information processing technology, evolving industry and regulatory standards, and changing customer preferences.
If the information we rely upon to run our businesses was found to be inaccurate or unreliable or if we fail to maintain effectively our information systems and data integrity, we could have operational disruptions, have problems in determining medical cost estimates and establishing appropriate pricing, have customer and physician and other health care provider disputes, have regulatory or other legal problems, have increases in operating expenses, lose existing customers, have difficulty in attracting new customers, or suffer other adverse consequences.
We depend on independent third parties for significant portions of our systems-related support, equipment, facilities, and certain data, including data center operations, data network, voice communication services and pharmacy data processing. A change in service providers could result in a decline in service quality and effectiveness or less favorable contract terms which may adversely affect our operating results.
We rely on our agreements with customers, confidentiality agreements with employees, and our trade secrets and copyrights to protect our proprietary rights. These legal protections and precautions may not prevent misappropriation of our proprietary information.
In addition, substantial litigation regarding intellectual property rights exists in the software industry, including litigation involving end users of software products. We expect software products to be increasingly subject to third-party infringement claims as the number of products and competitors in this area grows. If a cybersecurity attack were to be successful, we could be materially adversely affected due to the theft, destruction, loss, misappropriation or release of confidential data or intellectual property, operational or business delays resulting from the disruption of our IT systems, or negative publicity resulting in reputation or brand damage with our customers, brokers, agents, providers, and other stakeholders.
There can be no assurance that our IT process will successfully improve existing systems, develop new systems to support our expanding operations, integrate new systems, protect our proprietary information, defend against cybersecurity attacks, or improve service levels. In addition, there can be no assurance that additional systems issues will not arise in the future. Failure to adequately protect and maintain the integrity of our information systems and data, or to defend against cybersecurity attacks, may result in a material adverse effect on our results of operations, financial position, and cash flows.
For dates of service on or after that date, health plans and providers will be required to use ICD codes for such diagnoses and procedures. While we have prepared for the transition to ICD, if unforeseen circumstances arise, it is possible that we could be exposed to investigations and allegations of noncompliance, which could have a material adverse effect on our results of operations, financial position and cash flows.
Recent growth is the military health system (MHS) is partly attributable to the TRICARE Senior Pharmacy (TSRx) program, which expanded. Recent growth is partly attributable to the TRICARE Senior Pharmacy (TSRx) program prescription drugs depend on the dispensing location chosen by ben-.
Further, providers may use ICD codes differently than they used ICD-9 codes in the past, which could result in lost revenues under risk adjustment. During the transition to ICD, certain claims processing and payment information we have historically used to establish our reserves may not be reliable or available in a timely manner. If we do not adequately implement the new ICD coding set, our results of operations, financial position and cash flows may be materially adversely affected.
We are involved in various legal actions and governmental and internal investigations, any of which, if resolved unfavorably to us, could result in substantial monetary damages. Increased litigation and negative publicity could increase our cost of doing business.
We are or may become a party to a variety of legal actions that affect our business, including breach of contract actions, employment and employment discrimination-related suits, employee benefit claims, securities laws claims, and tort claims. In addition, because of the nature of the health care business, we are subject to a variety of legal actions relating to our business operations, including the design, management, and offering of products and services. These include and could include in the future:.
In some cases, substantial non-economic or punitive damages as well as treble damages under the federal False Claims Act, Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act and other statutes may be sought. While we currently have insurance coverage for some of these potential liabilities, other potential liabilities may not be covered by insurance, insurers may dispute coverage, or the amount of our insurance may not be enough to cover the damages awarded.
In addition, some types of damages, like punitive damages, may not be covered by insurance. In some jurisdictions, coverage of punitive damages is prohibited. Insurance coverage for all or some forms of liability may become unavailable or prohibitively expensive in the future. The health benefits industry continues to receive significant negative publicity reflecting the public perception of the industry. This publicity and perception have been accompanied by increased litigation, including some large jury awards, legislative activity, regulation, and governmental review of industry practices.
These factors may adversely affect our ability to market our products or services, may require us to change our products or services, may increase the regulatory burdens under which we operate, and may require us to pay large judgments or fines. Any combination of these factors could further increase our cost of doing business and adversely affect our results of operations, financial position, and cash flows.
We cannot predict the outcome of these matters with certainty. As a government contractor, we are exposed to risks that may materially adversely affect our business or our willingness or ability to participate in government health care programs. A significant portion of our revenues relates to federal and state government health care coverage programs, including the Medicare, military, and Medicaid programs.
These programs involve various risks, as described further below. The loss of these and other CMS contracts or significant changes in the Medicare program as a result of legislative or regulatory action, including reductions in premium payments to us or increases in member benefits without corresponding increases in premium payments to us, may have a material adverse effect on our results of operations, financial position, and cash flows.