- Sponsored News - Health care reform is continuing to change how businesses offer health insurance coverage, and there are several regulations to remember throughout the year. As of Jan. 1, 2016, a new phase of regulations is now in effect as a result of the Affordable Care Act (ACA). Business owners have to be sure they are using the necessary tools to remain compliant and meet ACA reporting requirements, which include the administrative work that comes along with health care reform. Below are a few tips from Aflac
, the leading provider of voluntary insurance at the worksite in the United States, for business owners and human resources representatives to keep in mind to stay on track all year:1. Remember that the Employer Shared Responsibility requirement is now in effect. This means employers with at least 50 full-time equivalent employees are required to offer affordable health coverage that pays at least 60 percent of the cost of covered benefits for employees and their dependents. If employers do not comply, they may be penalized if one or more of its full-time employees receive a premium tax credit for purchasing individual coverage on one of the public health insurance exchanges.2. Learn who needs coverage. Applicable large employers with 50 or more employees, including equivalents, are required to provide coverage to full-time employees who work at least 30 hours a week, as well as dependents under the age of 26. However, businesses are not required to offer coverage to part-time employees or the spouses of part-time or full-time employees.3. Adhere to IRS reporting requirements for employers. Applicable large employers and businesses with self-funded health plans are required to report information regarding the health coverage of employees to the Internal Revenue Service (IRS).It's important for business owners to keep track of any changes in employment status for each employee, provide ppropriate health coverage and report necessary information to the IRS. There are many resources to help businesses stay on track with requirements. A good place to start is with your local broker and insurance agent or by visiting aflac.com/health-care-reform
) - Sponsored News - The cold, blistering months can take a toll on our mental and physical health, but a colorful mix of seasonal ingredients can keep you going strong until springtime.Honey sweet roasted pears and tangy balsamic lentils are tossed with winter greens to make this simple and balanced meal, packed full of essential nutrients, including fiber, vitamin C, antioxidants, folate and iron."Combining the refreshing flavors of fruits and vegetables, this satisfying salad is soul-warming comfort food at its best," says Kathy Stephenson, marketing communications director for USA Pears
. "Roasted pears on a bed of greens with lentils capture the lively promise of springtime and the nourishment our bodies crave this time of year."Serve salad warm. If you desire a little more richness, try topping the salad with long curls of parmesan cheese.Warm Winter Greens with Balsamic Lentils and Roasted PearsIngredients:* 2 bunches of winter greens, washed, dried and torn into large piecesLentils:* 2 teaspoons olive oil* 1 small sweet onion, cut into half rings* 1/2 teaspoon salt* freshly ground black pepper* 1/4 cup balsamic vinegar* 3/4 cup brown lentils, rinsed* 1 cup cold waterRoasted Pears:* 2 firm, ripe Anjou pears* 2 teaspoons olive oil* 2 teaspoons honey* 6-8 sage leaves, tornPreheat oven to 375 degrees. Prepare greens and transfer to large bowl. Place saucepan over medium heat. Once hot, add olive oil, onions, salt and pepper, and saute until onions begin to caramelize. Add vinegar to deglaze pan, stirring to pick up bits that may be stuck to the bottom. Cook until vinegar reduces and pan is nearly dry, about 3 minutes. Add lentils and water, cover and bring to a boil. Once boiling, reduce heat to medium low and simmer for 15-18 minutes, or until lentils are al dente.Spread pears onto sheet pan. Stir olive oil and honey together and drizzle over pears. Add sage leaves, toss pears gently with mixture and transfer to oven. Roast pears for 12-15 minutes, or until just tender.When lentils are done, pour atop the winter greens while still hot. Using tongs, toss lentils and greens together until greens are softened and glossy. Transfer mixture to a clean bowl and drizzle with more olive oil. Top the warm salad with roasted pears and sage leaves. Serve immediately.
) - Sponsored News - Blame it on kids who can download music from iTunes with a swipe of a finger. Or point to a sluggish economy. Maybe it's the fact that society as a whole, while still in love with music, would rather watch TV than gather around a piano.
Whatever the reason, piano sales have been less than grand for decades, as fewer people take up the instrument. With an average cost of $16,000 for a new grand piano, it's easy to understand why those who are interested might opt for a less expensive electronic keyboard or buy used.
According to the National Association of Music Merchants, the best year for new piano sales was more than a century ago; in 1909 more than 364,500 were sold, and our population was only 90 million.
Today? Our population has more than tripled, while piano sales have reportedly plummeted to an all-time low. Only 30,000 new pianos were sold in 2015.
"Computer technology has just changed everything about what kids are interested in," said Larry Fine, a Boston-based piano technician. "People are interested in things that don't take much effort, so the idea of sitting and playing an hour a day to learn piano is not what kids want to do."
Which is why piano stores like Piano Man's Piano Superstore
in College Park, Maryland, is being forced to close its doors. The 32,000 square foot store specializes in late-model, brand-name, pre-owned pianos at discounted prices, catering to professionals as well as beginners. The company normally reconditions and restores 20 to 30 pianos every month, but the company said its sales have been lagging.
Owner Nick Margaritas said that since the onset of the recession, new piano sales have been dropping rapidly and are only half of what they were in 2008. Another indicator that things are not what they once were is that sales for the 2015 Christmas season -- a peak time for the industry -- were the softest seen in years. Couple that with the blizzard of 2016, and the decision to close an operation that was simply "too big to succeed" was an easy one, said Margaritas.
Top brands such as Steinway, Baldwin, Yamaha, Kawai and others must be sold prior to the projected closing date of April 30. The Baltimore Showroom and Piano Service Center that has been in operation since 1974 will, however, remain open.
For more information, visit www.pianomansuperstore.com
) - Sponsored News - More than 100 million U.S. adults suffer from chronic pain, with one of the most common conditions -- Myofascial Pain -- affecting the muscles and tissues all over the body. The cost to both sufferers and the economy? Massive. Which helps explain why so many experts are now talking chiropractic care.
Watch the video at: https://youtu.be/VkLYCO6cQJk
) - Sponsored News - It might not be as romantic as jewelry or chocolates, but could the best Valentine's Day present actually be to have a serious talk
about finances with your spouse or significant other? According to Fidelity Investments' "Couples Retirement Study," nearly half of couples argue about money -- everything from bills to overspending -- and 25 percent say their spats are never resolved. "Never" being a word Cupid wouldn't like.
See full-sized image here.
) - Noticias destacadas - El día de San Valentín está por llegar y encontrar el regalo ideal para tu persona especial, a la vez que comunicar el correcto mensaje romántico, no sólo puede ser difícil, sino que además un abrumador.
Por suerte, JCPenney
cuenta con regalos con estilo y asequibles para dar en cualquier etapa de tu relación, ya sea que busques algo tierno o sexy. Aquí, nuestra tienda de ventanilla única ofrece consejos para elegir el regalo ideal que demuestre tu afecto este San Valentín.
* 1-4 citas: Propón algo divertido y discreto con una comida en casa acompañada de un vino rico. Busca tu receta favorita y prepara un postre en la sartén de corazón profesional anti-adherente de 9 pulgadas de Cake Boss. Mantén frío el vino favorito de tu amorcito con estilo en la conservadora portátil de botellas con tapa a rosca de Wine Enthusiast. Además, no olvides estimular todos los sentidos -- pon un bello arreglo floral en la mesa y una bandeja difusora de Adele Reed para sumar un aroma delicioso y algún luz de velas al ambiente.
* 4-12 meses: Si bien aún en esta etapa el romance está floreciendo, intenta dar regalos agradables que muestren cuánto te importa pero sin gastarte una fortuna. Pon sus canciones de amor favoritas en el estereo de carga dual iHome o has un regalo chistoso con tazas de café de "Don't go bacon my heart" y "I couldn't if I fried". Todo esto disponible en JCPenney. Si deseas un regalo más refinado para él, mira los objetos de la colección exclusiva de Michael Strahan. Regalos como el pañuelo de bolsillo Medallion o el juego de gemelos y corbata con patrones se asegurarán de que piense en ti siempre que se vista para una ocasión especial.
* 1 año o más: Mantén la llama ardiendo con ropa íntima de la colección Ambrielle de JCPenney. Por ejemplo, los pijamas o
el juego de bata de 3 piezas o tal vez algo más picante como una camisola negra con lazos. Si quieres ir a lo grande comprando joyería, considera la colección Heart of Hallmark de JCPenney y piezas como el anillo de diamante de 1/5 CTTW de plata esterlina con relieve de 14k de oro rosa. Para ayudar a quien quieres a recordar y celebrar los momentos felices que compartieron con el paso de los años, imprime y enmarca tus fotos favoritas en el marco de corazón para fotos.
Para más ideas e información, visita www.jcpenney.com
) - Want to really do something to keep kids from being hurt playing sports?
Athletic TIPS (Towards Injury Prevention in Sports) has teamed up with GlobalGiving -- the largest global crowdfunding site for nonprofits -- to help advance one of its key goals: hosting community workshops across the country to better educate young athletes, their parents and advisors on ways to foster "a safer experience" for everyone playing sports at the kindergarten through college levels.
The workshops focus on:
* Dehydration and heat-related conditions
* Musculosketal injuries
Sports-related injuries have been recognized as "a silent epidemic" among the nation's youth -- accounting for nearly 8,000 emergency room visits daily. The recent launch of the not-for-profit Athletic TIPS program -- supported by everyone from health care professionals to athletic directors to retired New York Giants legend Michael Strahan -- was a direct response to those dire numbers.
"GlobalGiving allows us to raise awareness regarding the urgency for appropriate sports-related education," said Sherry McAllister, DC, executive vice president of the Foundation for Chiropractic Progress, a program sponsor.
The first workshop will take place this spring in San Jose, California, in partnership with Palmer College of Chiropractic. Others are being planned for Dallas, Boston, Atlanta and New Jersey.
Anyone can donate through GlobalGiving.org, though McAllister particularly encouraged doctors of chiropractic to step up since their extensive expertise makes them part of the solution. As for the workshops, health care professionals, athletes, parents and coaches can request one in their area by visiting TIPS4Sports.org
. Athletic TIPS will then work with them on the planning and fundraising, as well as potentially putting them in touch with pro athletes to heighten interest.
) - Sponsored News - Still wavering over whether to join the "chiropractic first" movement? Aside from all the other benefits of initially consulting a doctor of chiropractic for your common back pain conditions -- among them, less likelihood of having to undergo surgery -- the not-for-profit Foundation for Chiropractic Progress
cites mammoth research by the health giant Optum that found the per-episode monetary savings to be 40 percent. See full-sized image here.
) - Sponsored News - Each year, millions of people suffer from a cold or flu, and this year is likely to be no different.
Temperature taking is a key indicator of flu patterns and should be taken seriously, says Mary Pappas, the school nurse credited with first alerting officials about the H1N1 outbreak in 2009. "The flu usually comes with a fever while the common cold does not, so taking your temperature is the easiest way to tell the difference," she says. A high or prolonged fever can be an indicator of when to seek medical attention.
Pappas has been taking temperatures for more than 30 years and maintains that the most important consideration is that it be accurate. While there are many types of thermometers available, Pappas favors the Exergen TemporalScanner
because of its proven accuracy and ease of use; all it requires is a simple swipe across the forehead.
"Whether it's a student at my school or a parent at home, I know taking a temperature can be a challenge," says Pappas. "What I love about the TemporalScanner is that it's not invasive like an ear, rectal or oral thermometer. No matter what a student comes to see me for, I'm able to get an accurate reading. It's so easy to use that you can take someone's temperature even when they are sleeping and not disturb them."
To help you prepare and cope throughout the cold and flu season, Pappas recommends the following school nurse-approved tips:
1. Wash your hands regularly for at least 20 seconds with soap and water to help prevent the spread of germs, or use hand sanitizer.
2. Avoid sharing drinks or food with others.
3. Frequently clean commonly touched areas like doorknobs and light switches.
4. Always cover your mouth with your elbow or sleeve when you cough or sneeze.
5. Throw away tissues immediately after use.
6. If you have a fever, monitor your temperature regularly and check with your doctor.
7. Get plenty of rest and stay hydrated.
8. Use a humidifier to add moisture to the air and help drain congestion.
9. Stay home from work or school if you are sick to avoid spreading germs and make sure your fever is gone for at least 24 hours before you return.
10. Consider speaking with your doctor about getting a flu shot.
For more information visit http://www.cdc.gov/flu
) - Sponsored News - The mission: educating the public on how to help keep kids safe while participating in school athletic programs from kindergarten through college. To do that, the new Athletic TIPS program (Toward Injury Prevention in Sports) partnered with GlobalGiving.org to finance community workshops across the nation to confront what's been called a "silent epidemic" among the nation's youth -- with nearly 8,000 emergency room visits daily ascribed to sports-related injuries.
Watch the video at: https://youtu.be/324oTrtzgZI