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Aetna, Grandparents.com launch partnership

ALSO: Industry news from The American College, Northwestern Mutual, MetLife, Burnham Benefits, Allianz Life, SunGard and Health Republic Insurance

Aetna Inc. (NYSE: AET) is working with Grandparents.com Inc. to offer Medicare supplement policies exclusively to members of the American Grandparents Association, its member organization.

Grandparents.com will work with Aetna to provide wellness content, programs and initiatives to help underscore the need for healthy lifestyles and behavior change, particularly around preventable diseases.

Under the terms of the arrangement, the co-branded Medicare Supplement plan will be insured by Aetna Life Insurance Company and offered in 2014 to the AGA’s members in all 50 states, subject to state approvals. The new relationship aims to help 2 million AGA members have a greater, more informed role in their own health.

In other industry news:

The American College added the specialized Chartered Special Needs Consultant(ChSNC) designation to its curriculum. The credential, which includes three college-level courses, gives financial advisors the tools they need to manage all of the emotional and financial complexities involved in planning for families who care for loved ones with special needs.

The first two courses in the curriculum deal with approaches to long-term disabilities and the legal and financial issues which special needs families face. The third course is a Web-based capstone course that uses case studies and extensive examples to help advisors become more effective planners in this area.

Included in the curriculum is practical information on the unique considerations, tax deductions, healthcare issues, Medicaid complexities and the emotional aspects of planning a secure future for special needs families.

To use the ChSNC designationwith the public, advisors must also have mastered the basics of financial planning as evidenced by holding the CLU, ChFC, CFP Certification, PFS credential, or a master’s degree in financial planning (or an equivalent area of study).

 

Northwestern Mutual’s financial representative internship program has been recognized for the 18th consecutive year as one of the top 10 programs nationwide in the 2014 Vault Guide to Internships. The company ranked No. 6 on the list and No. 2 in the banking/finance category.

Vault.com provides intelligence on what it’s really like to work in an industry, company, or profession. Vault's editors surveyed thousands of current and former interns and evaluated hundreds of internship programs to select the 10 programs they feel provide the best all-around experience. Considered factors include: mentorship availability, career advancement opportunities, intern involvement/capacity for learning, compensation, industry clout and work culture.

The Northwestern Mutual internship program was launched in 1967, and has grown from 1,000 to more than 3,400 interns recruited annually in the past eight years.

 

MetLife has added grief counseling services on its basic group life insurance programs. Employees will have access to licensed professional counselors and related services. It will be available Jan. 1, subject to state availability, for new and existing customers, at no additional cost to the employer or employee.

To help individuals with difficult emotional challenges, MetLife’s grief counseling service, provided by Harris, Rothenberg International (HRI), Inc., provides employees, their dependents and beneficiaries with counseling to help them cope with grief following the death of a loved one or a major life change such as divorce, loss of employment, or financial hardship. Employees and their dependents may consult with a highly-credentialed counselor up to five times per event. Personal attention matters most at these times and visits can take place face-to-face, or via phone, depending upon individual preference. The counselors are available nationwide and are licensed professionals with extensive experience working with people who have suffered a loss or a major life change triggering feelings of grief. The counseling provided is confidential and offered at no cost on MetLife’s basic term life programs.

 

Burnham Benefits Insurance Services added Rachel Aleknavicius as its newest senior account executive. Aleknavicius will support the firm’s development of benefit programs for clients. She will identif client needs and develop alternative solutions for employee benefit plans to help employers to reduce costs and remain compliant with new healthcare reform laws.

The Minneapolis/St. Paul Business Journal recognized Giulio Terzariol, chief financial officer of Allianz Life Insurance Company of North America (Allianz Life), as CFO of the Year for the Twin Cities area. The peer-judged annual award honors “outstanding performance as corporate financial stewards” in seven categories. Terzariol was one of two honorees named in the public companies category.

As CFO, Terzariol is involved in every substantive decision regarding the company and its strategy. He and his 150-strong team have implemented projects to improve the capital position of the company, restructured the risk management function and helped redesign all of the company’s major products to reduce risk and make the products more sustainable. He is personally active in numerous areas that do not at first appear finance-related such as performance optimization and diversity initiatives.

 

SunGard launched iWorks Enterprise Financials, a business intelligence tool that gives insurers the ability to transform raw financial data into actionable insights and timely analysis for investments, risk and compliance. Delivered as a cloud-based service, iWorks Enterprise Financials is designed to help chief investment and financial officers make better, more informed business decisions while achieving smarter operations.

iWorks Enterprise Financials gives executives and managers the ability to extract and assemble data into charts, graphs, scorecards and dashboards, helping them to improve:

  • Access to additional investment options;
  • Visibility across multiple investment portfolios;
  • Clarity on enterprise compliance, financial and investment risks;
  • Communication with regulators, shareholders and agencies;
  • Return on investment from compliance and risk management efforts;
  • Accuracy, speed and effectiveness of executive-level reporting.

 

Health Republic Insurance of New York, a new not-for-profit Consumer Operated and Oriented Plan (CO-OP) offering health insurance coverage in New York State, hired Nick Liguori as chief operating officer.

Liguori brings more than 15 years of experience implementing and managing strategic and operational initiatives at various insurance and healthcare companies. He has held a series of senior operational positions including, vice president of Strategic Planning for Health Plus, where he established best-in-class strategic planning, business analysis, and performance improvement capabilities thereby accelerating growth across the organization; and vice president of Health Plan Operations for Amerigroup (NY), where he spearheaded the turnaround of a key business line. Prior to joining Health Republic Insurance, Liguori most recently served as vice president of Business Development for Elderplan, where he was responsible for developing, implementing and managing new Medicare/Medicaid programs and provider partnerships, as well as leading other strategic and business development initiatives.

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