10 Reasons to Take Astaxanthin

Astaxanthins are powerhouse naturally occurring substances with antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. Consuming a healthy dosage of astaxanthin daily can help you to improve your overall health and prevent the onset of various diseases and illnesses.

What is Astaxanthin?

A type of carotenoid, astaxanthin is known for its various health benefits in the human body. It is naturally occuring and therefore comes with many health benefits you should be aware of. Astaxanthin is the substance that gives species their red-pinkish colour found in shrimp, flamingos, salmon, and many more.  

Astaxanthin is a powerful carotenoid which means it has many beneficial properties. Carotenoids are high in their antioxidant properties and help the body in various different ways. For example, they help protect the body against cellular damage and other chronic diseases. In nature, astaxanthin are a type of xanthophylls which play huge roles in the metabolism of plants.  

Astaxanthin are the “king” of carotenoids which means that they provide the most beneficial results for the human body. They are one of the many carotenoids that have been studied the most.

Food Sources of Astaxanthin

Astaxanthin comes from many different types of foods. Natural sources are produced by several micro algae, fungi, and certain bacteria. It also comes from the creatures that consume algae, such as aquatic animals. Some common sources of astaxanthin are the following: shrimp, crab, lobster, salmon, red trout, krill etc. These food sources have very limited amounts of astaxanthin so it is hard to benefit from just the foods alone. With that being said, it is essential to take dietary supplements that individuals can incorporate into their diet. By doing this, the daily requirement that is needed to benefit from astaxanthin can be attained.

Astaxanthin is not produced by humans therefore it must be ingested through the foods we consume or via supplementation. On average, it is recommended 4 to 12 mg of astaxanthin per day to receive the most benefits from it. This, however, can vary from person to person based on their health requirements and health conditions of the individual.

Astaxanthin a fat-soluble ingredient which means that it has to be consumed with healthy fats. Some examples of healthy fats include fatty fish, avocado oils, and olive oils. By doing this, the astaxanthin can be easily absorbed in order to reap the benefits.

Why You Should be Taking Astaxanthin

Astaxanthin has many health benefits and it should be incorporated by everyone in their diets. Astaxanthin is a powerful antioxidant and an anti-inflammatory compound that is at least 1000 times more powerful than Vitamin C.

Below are the top 10 reasons why you should be taking astaxanthin…

  • Astaxanthin supports heart health

Astaxanthin is rich in antioxidant properties which helps the body to maintain normal blood levels, LDL and HDL levels. In turn, the blood fat levels stay in a normal range which helps to improve blood flow and reduce the fatty acids found in the blood.

  • Astaxanthin helps fight inflammation

Astaxanthin has strong anti-inflammatory properties which inhibit the activity of compounds that create inflammation in the body. Astaxanthin is able to target high-stress areas that cause inflammation, such as the heart and the brain. If there are high levels of inflammation in the body, it is known to fuel other conditions such as heart disease. By incorporating astaxanthin into their diet, it can help to prevent such diseases.

  • Astaxanthin reduces oxidative stress

If there are any sorts of imbalances in the body, it can create oxidative stress in the body, leading to the creation of free radicals that can cause negative effects in the body. By consuming a diet that is high in antioxidants, it can prevent stress and inflammation in the body and astaxanthin is a great supplement that can help prevent it. In addition, astaxanthin has been shown to lower oxidative stress in obese individuals and smokers.

  • Astaxanthin improves eye vision

Astaxanthin is known to help prevent common eyes diseases, such as glaucoma, a condition that of increased pressure that can lead to eye blindness. Astaxanthin protects the eyes from light-induced damage that can help reduce eye dryness, blurred vision, and tiredness. Several clinical trials have shown that astaxanthin also helps with diabetic retinopathy, macular degeneration, and fatigue in the eyes.

  • Astaxanthin helps to promote healthy skin

With enough oral doses of astaxanthin it can help smooth wrinkles and retain the moisture on the skin. Astaxanthin also helps to preserve elasticity which is an important factor in keeping the skin looking smooth. Therefore, a diet rich in astaxanthin can improve fine lines and keep the skin looking young.

  • Astaxanthin protects the brain

Astaxanthin has the potential to slow cognitive decline that results from natural brain aging and protects the cells from damage from various toxins. This in turn helps to improve the flow of the blood in the brain and helps improve memory.

  • Astaxanthin promotes joint health

Due to its high anti-inflammatory properties, astaxanthin can reduce and symptoms linked with conditions, such as arthritis. Anti-inflammatory substances slow down the damage that is caused by free radicals which is a major component to improving the health of the joints.  

  • Astaxanthin helps to improve muscle performance

Since astaxanthin has the ability to promote the use of fatty acids in the body, it helps with endurance and prevents muscle and skeletal damage. Astaxanthin can boost muscle performance which leads to better overall health.

  • Astaxanthin lowers risk for diabetes

As we know, astaxanthin is a substance that is filled with antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. These properties are essential in reducing high blood sugar levels in the body which often indicate diabetes. Therefore, consuming foods or supplements with astaxanthin, it can improve the sugar metabolism in the body that help to prevent or reduce the risks for diabetes.

  • Astaxanthin helps fight fatigue

With improved recovery levels, astaxanthin is indicated to help improve energy levels. It also improves sugar metabolism which can overall help to fight fatigue.

The Bottom Line

Overall, consuming healthy levels of astaxanthin helps to support the body because of its high antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. So make sure to consume the recommended amount of astaxanthin daily to reap its amazing benefits!

Why Would You Buy Health Plans?

When it comes to buy health plans in Virginia, consumers have different and varied reasons. A consumer may be a first-time buyer; it may be changing the plans; it may be switching jobs; it wants health plans to accommodate more family members; it might be searching for lower premium health plans, etc. All these reasons could be ascribed to individuals and families and groups in Virginia.

Wide options are available in Virginia for buying health plans through different modes and sources. Right from government sponsored programs, consumers can buy private health insurance from the authorized and registered insurers.

In this article, we will discuss some reasons for which consumers would like to buy health plans in Virginia. We will also discuss how to make this purchase optimal in every sense.

– Losing job and your group health insurance?

In the wake of recent economic downturn, lots of Virginians lost their jobs. Applying for COBRA could be a very good option for such consumers.

– Losing health insurance because of divorce or widowhood, or because you are no longer a dependent of your parents?

The healthcare reforms have increased the dependent’s age for children to 26 years, and with this, the options have becomes quite wide. At the same time, divorce, legal separation and widowhood also cause people to lose dependent status but COBRA still allows you to continue coverage for up to 36 months.

– Losing job because of trade policy?

In such a situation, the Trade Adjustment Assistance Reform Act may pay 65 percent of the cost of your health insurance for up to one year, and sometimes longer.

– Are you an early retiree who has lost your health coverage?

The Trade Adjustment Assistance Reform Act helps people who fall in the category of early retirees.

– Do you have a serious medical condition or a disability?

Consumer with serious medical condition or disability may qualify for Medicare. Even if a consumer is under the age of 65 years and has a disability that is to last at least one year or is expected to cause death, he/she can qualify for Medicare policy.

For low income groups having disability, Medicaid program works well. Consumers having a disability usually qualify for Medicaid because they get Supplemental Security Income (SSI).

– Are you looking for health insurance but unable to get it through your job?

Try finding health plans from registered insurers in Virginia. To get a suitable and affordable health insurance plan, you will need to do your home-work and shop around a bit. While buying health insurance from private insurers, it is advisable to check for their authorization with the Bureau of Insurance of Virginia.

Business Health Insurance – Which is the Best Plan For Your Business?

The idea behind business health insurance is to provide health care for not only yourself but your employees as well. That’s simple enough; well it’s not quite as simple as it may seem at first.

Because health care in the United States is a difficult tangle of rival insurance companies, plans and laws. A businesses willingness to provide health care coverage to its employees is quite often dictated by geography. Some state laws can affect any health policies a company may want to introduce. A recent survey contracted by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services claimed that around 67% of employees are covered in one way or another by an employer-sponsored health care plan. One way of putting this into perspective is if a highly skilled worker receives three job offers it is more than likely that at least two of them will include health insurance and the third does not. It doesn’t take a brain surgeon to work out which they would choose to go for interviews with.

Health insurance is available in four basic types;

1. Medicare and Medicaid: Medicare is an insurance plan backed by the government for anyone over 65 or is in the later stages of renal failure. With a workforce that is getting older and older there are many businesses that find themselves with employees over the age of 65 that are looking for complimentary insurance coverage. Medicaid is also a government insurance that is aimed at those that are very poor and some disabled categories. Some states are now becoming very strict with employers that completely rely on this type of insurance for their low-wage workers.

2. Traditional or Indemnity Insurance: This more traditional type of health insurance is normally offered by the insurer for a premium, this allows the insured person/persons to pick the health provider of their choice and to have any costs incurred by them paid back by the insurer. You only have to go back about 20 years or so ago and you would see this was the most common form of health insurance. Nowadays unless you own a very large business this kind of coverage is not a viable option so it has become virtually non-existent.

3. Health Maintenance Organizations (or, HMOs): an HMO is an organization of doctors, care providers and hospitals that have made a deal with the insurers to provide health care at a lower rate that they have negotiated. An HMO, s type of coverage uses a primary care physician to organize the insured persons care under that plan. However, the persons insured under this plan will be limited in their choices of hospital, doctors or any other services to those that are in the HMO, but that person could be referred to a specialist outside of the plan as long as the PCP approve it. Under this scheme premiums are reduced because of the scale and management of care.

4. Preferred Provider Organizations (or, PPOs): PPO, s and HMO, s are very similar in some respects but are even more restrictive. With an HMO there might be two or three different hospitals you could choose from as long as they are in the plan. With a PPO the insurance company will have designated hospitals and physicians that are within a dedicated network. The insured person/persons will have a PCP but any care that has to be covered must be done within this framework. If any care should take place outside of this network then the insured will have to meet most or even all of the costs involved. The premiums under this scheme are greatly reduced but then so are your choices in health care options. If you should be lucky enough to live in an area with very good health care facilities then a local PPO plan will provide excellent savings over and above HMO and traditional policies.

5 Reasons Why You Need Discount Health Care

With the cost of medical treatment and prescriptions constantly on the rise, and unemployment being higher than ever, more and more people are finding getting even the most basic medical care impossible. For many people who are living paycheck to paycheck, going to the doctor can mean that they are going to be short on rent, or will have to skip a meal. But health is extremely important and effects your quality of life. If you can’t afford health insurance, and therefore have to sacrifice medical care you sh

ould look into a discount health plan. Here are 5 reasons why you need discount health care if you’re under or uninsured.

1) The first and most important reason to sign onto a discount health care plan is that you can still get the medical treatment you need without going broke. Going to the doctor, whether it’s for something like a routine physical or for something more serious, shouldn’t be a luxury. It’s a necessity to maintain a healthy life. So with a discount health plan, you can have affordable access to this vital medical treatment.

2) Another great reason to sign up for a discount medical plan is that you don’t have to worry about not qualifying because of pre-existing conditions. Anyone, regardless of their current medical condition can qualify.

3) With a discount medical plan, you also don’t have to worry about filing complicated claim forms and then waiting for your benefits to kick in. Discount medical plans work almost like a money-saving coupon. When you pay for your services rendered, you then receive the discount right away–something people who are lacking funds can really appreciate.

4) Another great reason to sign up for a discount health care plan is that your whole household can benefit from the savings. Of course it would depend on the plan and company you choose to get your discount health care benefits from, but that means that your children (typically 25 years and under) living in your household, along with your spouse, and any parents 60 or older living with you can enjoy the benefits of your discount medical plan.

5) Arguably, one of the most appealing aspects of a discount medical plan is that you don’t have to worry about your membership being denied for any reasons. Unlike traditional insurance, a discount medical plan has no restrictions, exclusions, and you don’t need a physical to qualify. In addition, since it is unlike a traditional medical insurance plan, you don’t need to worry about benefit caps.

All in all, your health isn’t something that you should leave hanging in the unknown. If you can’t afford a traditional health care plan and can’t get the medical attention and prescriptions you need, then you should most definitely look into a discount health care plan. Your health is your livelihood and you should do all you can to keep it going strong. Make it happen and sign up for a discount health plan today.

Live Longer – 7 Truths to Taking Responsibility For Your Health

Reports are flooding the airwaves about the growing obesity problem in the US. Apparently a new report shows that 28 US States show increases in obesity rates in adults. With that are growing rates of diseases brought on by lack of healthy living.

I doubt if anyone is not affected by this issue in some way. If not personally, at least someone you know has a problem with obesity and related diseases. The difficult thing about obesity related diseases is that the cure requires a lifestyle change. Medical doctors are often at a loss on how to get patients to have the discipline to change what is habitual in their lives. The other unfortunate thing is that the motivation to make the change often only comes when it is almost too late.

Here are 7 important truths to recognize about living a healthier lifestyle.

1. Health Issues Strike Everyone

My father was a mortician and he used to say that, “Death is no respector of person.” What that meant is that at some point, everyone would face death in some way. It might sound morbid but when you think of it, it is just a part of life. The thing is you don’t have to rush to get to what’s going to happen in its own time. Not taking care of yourself is another way to experience how health issues have no respect for individuals. Problems brought on by wrong lifestyle choices don’t care about your income, skin color, position in life or any other factor. If you abuse your health you will suffer the consequences the same as anyone else. Lifestyle choices related to health can be changed. It takes responsibility and discipline but it can be done.

2. You Control Your Body

Unless you are in dire circumstances, most responsible, independent adults are in a position to be in control of their body. If you haven’t known about food choices or not had the ability to select what to put into your mouth, it’s time to start taking on that responsibility. Learn what’s healthy and what’s not then decide to add what’s healthy to your diet. Start moving about and exercising, be positive and think about what you can contribute to the future of your world. You have control over you, so stop making excuses when you really don’t have any to make.

3. Put Yourself to Bed

Rest is a vital component to health. Many professionals brag about their ability to stay up for hours on end working on projects. Sure there will be times when long hours are necessary. But making it a habit can lead to serious consequences. A lack of sleep means being less productive and less effective overall. It is better to give your brain rest instead of wearing it out early. Sleep is a way to replenish the body and make it stronger. A lack of sleep can be a trigger for high blood pressure or even a heart attack. The body needs rest. It might take some time to get back into a normal sleep pattern but this is imperative for better health.

4. Start Exercising

Do you wonder why every President tries to show that nation that they are exercising? It’s no secret that being active keeps a person healthy. Leaders don’t show off their exercise routine solely for a photo opportunity. It’s to influence the citizens to do the same. If the busiest person in the nation can spend time exercising, what’s your excuse? Twenty to 30 minutes a day in deliberate movement is not too much to ask. Walk a longer distance, take the stairs, pump some iron, or go dancing. Just get that heart pumping and muscles working to get your body in shape.

5. Drink More Water

The human body is comprised of over 80% water. As soon as you feel thirsty, your body is starting to become dehydrated. Drinking water is often a problem for people in the workplace who can’t always get up and go the public restroom; but this is an important part of staying healthy and productive. Drinking up to eight glasses of water a day is imperative for health. If you can, bring your own water pitcher with a filter to work. Knowing how much water is in the picture is a great way to measure how much you drink at work and how much you drink during the rest of the day. Try this for a week and you’ll have noticeable differences in how you feel.

Know Your Health Supplements For Men

Females and men do not in fact get the identical health demands. Gentlemen, similar to females, yet, take vitamins and minerals for their bodies to ensure wellness or good health. To own a strong and firm body, gentlemen should follow a stable and balanced eating habit system. Furthermore, male should do usual work out and must have a safe and clean lifestyle.

The exclusively caution is that men’s everyday eating habit can not include all the nutrients the body requires. However, men should not be trouble about that because with health supplementation, all the nutrients a human requires is today workable. There are numerous types of health supplementation for gentlemen that are readily accessible on the market place nowadays. These human beings health supplements can help resolve issues facing men’s health these days.

Like women’s supplements, male’s supplements come in different shapes and sizes. Health supplements can be in the phase of vitamins and minerals and tablet or capsules. The very fundamental supplement for gentlemen should contain Vitamin B6, Vitamin A and zinc. Vitamin A contains antioxidant components that can eradicate free radicals from the body, thus keeping cancer. Vitamin A can likewise help in strengthening the body immune system and make the skin younger and fitter. Furthermore, a good health supplementation must have essential fatty acids and amino acid complex for total health of the body.

Older gentlemen meanwhile ask a different mixture of vitamins. Pantothenic acid, niacin and zinc should be acquired in by older male to maintain an alert mind and a revitalize body. Pantothenic acid is essential for the correct operation of adrenal gland. Zinc, then again, is needed to maintain prostate use and testosterone development. Zinc is besides needed in the growth of sperm. Finally, Niacin is required to keep a healthy cholesterol level.

There are as well health supplementation that can assist in freeing stress and encouraging the body’s defense system. Good Examples of such supplementation include Vitamin C, Omega-3 fatty acids, calcium, copper and beta-carotene. These are required elements to combat stress and strengthen the immune system.

If faced up with sex-associated problems, there are as well supplements needed to develop male’s sexual action. There are a lot of supplements that can encourage male’s testosterone degree and energize the body. A lot of male who have erectile dysfunction are utilizing such supplementation.

What have to be made for male who are searching for health supplements is meeting with their physicians or dietitian. Your doctor knows better what supplement is essential by your human body. You should not buy products that are not recognized by government authorities that are tasked to regulate or superintend food and drugs.

The Use and Implementation of Health Information Systems

The contents of this article are dedicated to investigating the utilization and application of health informatics in a variety of contexts. Hence, the article will treat the subjects of health information exchange, health knowledge management, e-health systems, e-public health systems and m-health systems.

* Health information exchangesrefer to the transmission and dissemination of healthcare information electronically among organizations within a region or community. The technological development registered at the level of health informatics resulted in the capability to electronically transmit clinical data among disparate healthcare information systems without it having to suffer any alterations. The degree of exchangeability has expanded to a national level. This way clinicians can integrate their independent records, creating agile, patient-centered electronic health records that generate a new level of patient safety and information exchange.

* Health knowledge managementimplies concerted, coordinated and deliberate efforts to manage the organizational knowledge by means of processes aiming at identifying and leveraging it to accentuate the organization’s ability to compete. Such an application in the healthcare domain has led to simplifying the process of updating the general knowledge database, creating a convenient discussion environment that replaces the traditional meeting.

* E-health systemsgather the healthcare practices that are supported by electronic processes and communication. This type of system comprises a broad spectrum of services that slowly deletes the separation line between medicine and information technology. Among these services, one could include telemedicine, electronic medical record, consumer health informatics, virtual healthcare teams, health knowledge management.

* E-public health systemsembody another application of the health informatics, this time in the public domain. Its functionality has to satisfy the public health mandate of improving the health status of the community and the population at large. Through this system, community health is assessed and proper measures are taken. Collection, analysis, interpretation and communication of the results are the primary processes that are carried out within an e-public health system. Technologies employed in this type of system include geographical information systems (GIS), data mining methodology and data warehousing.

* M-health systems refer to mobile communication network technologies for healthcare that are used to ensure efficiency and to supply timely and accurate patient information to medical professionals that are sent on “field”. Since hospital environments involve mobility of medical professionals, support personnel and indispensable medical equipment, more and more wireless technologies have been adopted.

Buying Individual Health Insurance Coverage – Additional Factors to Consider

It could be hard to decide which individual health insurance coverage to acquire for yourself. You should be guided accordingly as you choose and buy the plan to cover your healthcare needs.

You should start searching for appropriate individual health coverage. That is what you should do especially if you have been laid off from your job, you have decided to work as an entrepreneur, or you have opted to keep a home-based or online job. You could not expect your health coverage from your previous employer to last you a lifetime. As a cardinal rule, once you get out of employment, health plans that come as part of employee benefits instantly fade away as well.

Several Factors To Consider

It could be hard to decide which individual health insurance coverage to acquire for yourself and your family. Before you buy any, it is logical that you first consider several factors to make your decision worthwhile. The main consideration would be the amount of premiums required. Surely, you would go for a plan that would not cost too much on your pocket. Then you could choose between an HMO and a PPO coverage. The first would be more comprehensive but would enable you to consult doctors only within the insurer’s accredited network. The latter would enable you to consult any doctor but there could be additional costs out of your pocket.

There are other factors to consider prior to your purchase of any individual health insurance coverage. Here are some suggestions that experts always point out.

Consider Coverage On X-Rays And Prescriptions

X-ray sessions could be routine in specific treatment programs. It could cost a lot. Find an individual health insurance coverage that also includes X-ray costs. Prescriptions could also be possibly included in a healthcare plan. In fact, prescriptions are among the most frequently used benefits from health programs. Before buying a plan, be sure to review provisions and policies about the two mentioned ideas.

There Should Be Provisions About Emergency Care

Know the operational definition or emergency care in your own health policy. That way, you could have clearer ideas about costs or services like surgery and hospital care that could be applied towards implemented deductibles.

Look At The Deductibles

What should you look for if you could not afford a plan that covers routine type of care? You should look for individual health insurance coverage with higher deductibles instead of a plan that cuts back on coverage. Usually, a basic surgical or hospital plan could cost less. However, if you end up in a hospital, for sure, the last thing you would want to add to your worries is how you would shoulder your follow-up checkups after you have been released.

Look At Provisions About Visits To Specialists

Your individual health insurance coverage might not cover consultations with all types of medical specialists. Know which medical specializations you might possibly need in the future and check whether your plan covers it.

MinnesotaCare Offers Minnesota Health Insurance

One of the important players of the Minnesota health insurance niche is the MinnesotaCare, a public subsidized program meant to help out the residents of Minnesota. These are the people who do not enjoy access to the diverse health facilities and medical coverage effectively.

There are almost over 100000 people who are covered under the MinnesotaCare Minnesota health insurance policy. The program has played an instrumental role in ensuring the welfare reform strategy of the state. Additionally, the people are to be helped out by the without losing out on health care coverage. Other than the kids, the residents are rendered as ineligible in case their health insurances are offered by their employers or they pay about 50% of their health care expenses.

The eligibility criteria for qualifying for MinnesotaCare is that you are required to pay a fixed amount every month as part of a premium, which is defined by a sliding fee scale on the basis of your income as well as size of the family. This Minnesota health insurance policy also offers certain exceptions for families of military personnel and those who are registered with Transitional MinnesotaCare. A lot of them pay their premium through online procedures.

The health care services are offered according to the various kinds of health based plans. This is the reason as to why the people are able to choose the MinnesotaCare coverage that is applicable in your county. The health insurance policy in Minnesota is funded by a state sponsored tax that is levied on the health care providers and hospitals of Minnesota, as well as enrollee premiums and federal Medicaid funds. For the purpose of applying, you can contact the MinnesotaCare office or even the county offices which administer the program.

What are the Health Care Programs Covered Under MinnesotaCare?

The health care programs that are enveloped by MinnesotaCare include the following:

– MA or Medical Assistance
– MinnesotaCare
– Minnesota Family Planning Program
– GAMC or General Assistance Medical Care

The above mentioned health care programs in Minnesota are of help in case you are not able to fund for the health insurance costs solely by virtue of your job. There are also other parameters that might qualify you as eligible in this regard:

– You do not have a health insurance as you are unemployed
– You are disabled or have a chronic condition and require assistance for paying for health care and related services and need to stay at home
– You require assistance at a medical facility like nursing home or hospital
– You are covered under Medicare and require help for paying premiums and require additional services that Medicare does not cover
– You do not have insurance for various reasons

Health Care Reform – How Are You Affected? – Part 3

If you are an employer with fewer than 50 full time and “full time equivalent” (FTE) employees, you will enjoy the luxury of being exempted from the most onerous provisions discussed in the previous article. If you offer health insurance coverage to your employees you will still have a few issues affecting your health plan.

Effective for tax year 2013, an additional Medicare Part A tax of 0.9% will be assessed on incomes above $200,000 for individuals or $250,000 for joint filers. This works out to a 62% increase over the current Medicare tax rate of 1.45%. Another tax of 3.8% will be assessed against unearned income for “high income” taxpayers.

Other taxes will go into effect on or before January 1, 2014, that relate to HSA account distributions. The so-called Cadillac tax on rich health plans will begin then as well, but perhaps one of the most notable tax increases actually began March 23, of this year. All tanning bed operators began paying an additional 10% tax surcharge for customer rental of tanning beds.

If you offer group health insurance, your plan will have to eliminate lifetime caps on Essential Health Benefits (EHBs). As was discussed previously, EHBs will be further defined by Health and Human Services. It is believed EHBs will include certain wellness, outpatient and hospitalization benefits. That is, all health insurance plans must offer these benefits and can not place caps on how much can be paid out under the plan. A few of the EHBs may be required to be offered exclusive of a plan deductible, such as routine physical exams.

The most important issue for small groups is the 35% tax credit that is available for tax year 2010. This credit is available through tax year 2013 if the employer contributes at least 50% of the total premium cost. The debate continues at present if the 50% contribution rate must apply to dependents’ premiums as well. The larger the business becomes, the smaller the credit becomes. Consultation with a knowledgeable tax professional is recommended.

The credit will stop after 2013. At that time a two-year tax credit will then be available if the small group plan is purchased through the government health insurance exchange.

Children of employees are eligible as dependents until age 26, regardless of marital or student status.

By January 1, 2010,annual caps on EHBs must be eliminated. Too, the small business will not be able to extend a waiting period for enrolling new employees beyond 90 days. Texas state law already requires no more than a 3-month wait.

Pre-existing health conditions must be fully covered by January 1, 2014 for adults. The mandate for children under 19 years must be in effect by September 23, 2010. Insurance companies are challenging the child provision however saying, the time frame is too soon for the mandate to be implemented.