Global speculationOn 1 Mar 2001 in Personnel Today Themost alluring training and development packages require us to engage with timeand space. Helen Vandevelde explains whyTheparadox that the best way to retain talented staff is to invest in theiremployability has now passed into the mainstream of thinking among training anddevelopment managers. The more competitive you make your employees, the greatertheir incentive is to stick around for more.Thatinsight puts a new kind of burden on to training and development managers. Theyneed to think beyond the immediate interests of the organisation. That meanscoming up with human resource investment packages that will increase the valueof their people in the labour market. And those packages had better be moreattractive than the ones that rival companies put together.Howis it done? Why, you figure out what people need next. How is the labour marketgoing to move? What’s going to be the next big thing? Infinancial circles, this sort of activity is called “speculation”. And that’sjust what training and development managers should be doing: speculating inskills futures.Butit isn’t that easy. Different market segments are moving in varied ways. Andin reality, there’s never just one big thing. Not even the Internet. It’s morea case of a number of medium-sized things coming along.So,where do we look? Here are three suggestions, all linked in one way or anotherto globalisation.1– Invest in people’s cross-cultural skills and experienceThiscentury will be cross-cultural. Just as currencies converge in the EuropeanUnion, so will cultural values. This will happen more slowly, but as weparticipate in the same global markets as Malays and Mexicans, so will we needto acclimatise to their value structures (as they do to ours). To workeffectively, people will need to relate well to different cultures.2– Create and extend opportunities for colleagues to work across nationalboundariesThiscould occur within your own company if it has developed an internationalpresence, or in collaboration with business partners overseas. If these don’texist (as they won’t for many small businesses), create a network just for thispurpose.Thenumber of multinational companies has grown exponentially from 7,000 in 1970 to53,000 (with 450,000 foreign subsidiaries) in 1998. Together they account forbetween 20 and 30 per cent of total world output. Any individual who wants tomake sure the value of their personal human capital doesn’t sink, can’t affordto ignore these kinds of figures.3– Generate opportunities for people to collaborate across time zonesThatdoesn’t mean asking them to set their alarms for three in the morning. Butanother feature of the global economy is the extension of time zone relays. Workping-pongs from one side of the world to the other, as complementary teams takeforward projects around the clock in order to meet competitive pressures thatare driven by time.People’ssecurity lies not with the organisations they work for but inside their heads.Create the learning and experience programmes that give them confidence intheir ability to secure employment contracts should the need arise, and yougive them the best reason of all for staying with you.Onefinal point. Training and development managers need to invest in their ownglobal knowledge assets too…HelenVandevelde is an international conference presenter on globalisation and thefuture of work, and delivers consultancy programmes including A Toolkit forCareer Management in the Global Knowledge Economy Related posts:No related photos. Comments are closed. Previous Article Next Article
Related posts:No related photos. Previous Article Next Article Comments are closed. Whetheryou are working your way up the career ladder internally or planning the leapto that dream job, making your CV stand out from the crowd and creating theright impression at interview will optimise your chances of success, by NicPaton Valmai Hughes has spent the past month getting used to her new role as OHmanager at a major investment bank overseeing the health needs of 6,000 staffin London and the South East. Landing a new job is never as difficult as making a success of a high-poweredrole once you are in it but, nevertheless, Hughes admits she found theinterview process for the bank intensive. It took four interviews to get her the job, the first a two-hour assessmentof her competencies, the second and third one-hour interviews with seniormanagement and the fourth a more relaxed meeting of the team. “I made sure that when I went into the interviews I was, as far aspossible, not going to be confronted by anything that was alien to me,”she says. “But I have to admit I was not expecting a two-hour interviewfirst off.” Planning a career Occupational health nurses are often notoriously bad at planning theircareers. Like many professionals, particularly those working in a vocational fieldsuch as medicine, what is often, rightly, seen as more important is theclinical, patient-related work and developing your competencies in yourspecialist field. This can mean things like having a career path can easily getoverlooked. But as companies demand more and more from their OH departments, being ableto plan your career is becoming increasingly important for OH nurses. Whetherit is simply a case of working your way up the ladder internally or making theleap to that dream job or into academia, it is vital to know how to get thebest out of a job application and interview situation. As Angela Arnold, occupational health and safety recruitment adviser at OHrecruitment specialist Cheviot Artus puts it: “Quite a lot of OH nurseshave never had an interview in five to 10 years. And if they’ve worked theirway up a company, they may never have had a formal interview at all.” The first thing Valmai Hughes did was to sign on with specialist agency,Occupational Health Recruitment. They helped her prepare applications, workedwith her on her interviews and, for the latest job, helped with backgroundinformation on the organisation. “They prepared me so well that I was far less nervous. I think therewas only one question that took me by surprise. In that situation it’s normallyjust a question of telling the truth or being able to say where you might go tofind the answer,” she explains. When sitting down to think about your career, before getting distracted bythe nuts and bolts of CVs, application letters and interview rehearsals, it isworth just taking a step back and thinking, “Where is it I want to begoing?” suggests Sue Lamb, recruitment and development director at OHRecruitment. NHS or private sector, managerial or clinical front-line, academia or somesort of specialist role? How important is juggling family commitments? Are youcommitted to a particular part of the country? These are all questions that itis vital to get clear in your mind at an early stage. “It’s about not being blinkered, being flexible and open to suggestion.But if you really want to progress, you have to put yourself out and make sureyou are not too comfortable,” says Lamb. After this, it is a question of identifying what your skills are and askingthe question “What can I offer?”. For instance, you may decide youneed to take a sideways, or even a backwards, step to get to the position youeventually want. Or it might be that you need a particular qualification oraccreditation first. “What can you bring to a job in terms of experience? Your CV may saywhat your job description is, but what have you actually been doing?” asksLamb. It is important to talk about your place in the structure of the company,do you have access to the board or the managing director, for instance? Do youhave regional, national or even international responsibilities? When it comes to putting together a good CV, identify and focus onachievements that have been above and beyond the basic job description. Itmight have been introducing a sickness absence review or reducing sicknessabsence by a certain percentage. If you can back up achievements with hard,quantifiable evidence, all the better. “The CV is designed to illustrate to a prospective employer what youare capable of,” explains Lamb. It also goes without saying it needs to beaccurate and truthful, while promoting your achievements and abilities to thefull. Writing your CV Most employers will look askance at novella-length CVs crammed with text,littered with different fonts and point sizes and all printed on supposedlyclassy embossed grey or coloured paper. The best rule of thumb here is keep itsimple, clear (a size of 12 points is best) and consistent. Lamb, for one,recommends no more than three sides of A4 paper and try to avoid large blocksof text, using bullet points instead. It is also a good idea to put your nameand page number on each page in case they get lost or broken up. “It is the content, not the size that matters. They do not want to knowthat when you left school in 1963 you worked for a week in Woolworths,”she says. Stick too to your professional qualifications. The fact that you got a CSEin maths in 1971 is, in 2002, neither here nor there. Include a personalsummary of your abilities, skills and competences, but avoiding jargon andabbreviations where possible. “Make sure the people who are reading that CV understand clearly yourrole and how you have developed it. Show you have the essentials to do the jobyou are applying for, and how you intend to develop your career further,”Lamb adds. Keep your CV updated and view it as your ‘shop window’, advises Arnold.”Some people even do them in the third person,” she adds. The application letter should generally be a relatively short and simpleaffair, she advises, but never a standard letter. It should cover who you are,where you saw the advertisement, why you are interested in applying and pointout that your CV is enclosed. For both the CV and the letter, it is critical that you read the jobadvertisement carefully. There is nothing more likely to get your applicationthrown in the bin than getting the name of the person you are applying to wrong(or assuming their sex) or missing a key competence or qualification that isrequired. Assuming your CV is now so professional and polished that your favouredorganisation leaps at the chance of offering you an interview, the secret, asHughes showed, is preparation. Preparing for interview Check out the organisation as best you can, look it up on its website, readup on it, if possible find out about its culture, essentially glean as muchabout it as you can. Again, an agency may be able to do much of the legwork onthis for you. It is the same thing when it comes to the interview panel. If you can find outwho is on it and why, it will give you a much better idea of the sorts ofquestions that are going to be fired at you. A quick search on the Internetwill often throw up useful tips and advice too, suggests Arnold. Enlist friendsor family to do practice runs and get them to ask all those awkward questionsyou hope the real interviewers won’t. Check out, too, where you are going and how to get there. Even do a dummyrun. And give yourself lots of time. There’s nothing worse than arrivingharassed, flustered and out of breath after dashing in late from the car parkor railway station. Also, arriving early will give you an opportunity to sit inthe lobby and get a feel for the atmosphere of the company and the sort ofpeople who are coming and going. “The first three minutes are the most important when it comes to makingan impression. So walk in with your chin up, smiling, wearing a nice new suitand with a new haircut,” advises Lamb, with the proviso that it is not agood idea to go for an outfit that is too new and uncomfortable, as it willshow. “Be positive and confident, but not over-confident. Show you arewell-informed about the company, their record and why you want the job,”adds Arnold. If there are particular things you want to say or get across, orachievements you are particularly proud of, have them memorised and find aplace to turn the conversation around to get them in. It is also wise to have a set of questions committed to memory (and jotteddown on an easily reachable piece of paper in case you suddenly go blank) toavoid an awkward silence when the panel asks “any questions?”. If a question completely throws you, be honest, stresses Lamb. “If youstart to dig a hole, you’ll end up burying yourself. If you don’t knowsomething, admit it. If you start to waffle, they will know,” she says. Itis the same, just more so, for telling lies. When it comes to money, if the advertisement has not stated a salary and thepanel has not already brought it up, it is generally worth enquiring what salaryband the position is in. If the question is then thrown back at you –”What salary band did you have in mind?” – it is vital not to sellyourself short, so keep a salary figure in mind. At the end, thank the panel for calling you to be interviewed and askpolitely when you may expect to hear. It is also worth remembering that the interview is not over until you areback out on the street. A flippant or derogatory comment to the receptionist,or saying something stupid in the lift on the way down will often make its wayback to the panel. If you have not heard anything within five working days – unless the panelhas stated otherwise – it may be worth chasing up; if nothing else it shows youare still keen to be considered. If you are unsuccessful, do not be afraid to ask for feedback. If you remaininterested in that particular company, ask if you can be kept on file forfuture reference. And don’t worry. As with most things, success comes withpractice. Tips for getting a new job CVs– Focus on achievements above and beyond the basic jobdescription; provide evidence– Keep it simple, clear and consistent; use bullet points– Keep it updatedInterviews– Research the organisation– Do practice runs– Check your route, get there early– Be positive and confident– Prepare the points you want to make– Have some questions in reserve– If you don’t know the answer, say so – Remember the interview’s not over until you’re out on thestreet– Ask for feedback if you’re unsuccessful The road to successOn 1 Oct 2002 in Personnel Today
Written by Brad James Tags: Snow Women’s Basketball/USU Eastern women’s basketball FacebookTwitterLinkedInEmailEPHRAIM, Utah- Utah State Eastern outscored Snow College, 18-13, in the final quarter to sneak by the Lady Badgers with a 64-59 victory on Thursday.Snow led by four with 4:38 remaining in the game; however, the Eagles went on a 12-3 run to finish out the final quarter. Micah Gustafson led the Lady Badgers with 20 points on 10-of-13 shooting from the field. Sydney Pilling added 13 points, while Reagan Yamauchi had 8 points on the night.Snow will close out their home schedule next Thursday, February 20, against league leading Salt Lake Community College. Game time is slated for 5 p.m. February 13, 2020 /Sports News – Local USU Eastern Women Use Late Surge To Down Snow
View post tag: Norfolk View post tag: Strike July 18, 2011 View post tag: Naval View post tag: News by topic View post tag: Carrier View post tag: Navy View post tag: Group View post tag: Arrives More than 5,500 Sailors and Marines serving in the Enterprise Carrier Strike Group (CSG) arrived in Norfolk July 15, returning from a six-month deployment supporting operations in the Mediterranean and the Arabian Sea. USS Enterprise (CVN 65), along with embarked Carrier Air Wing (CVW) 1, Carrier Strike Group (CSG) 12, Destroyer Squadron (DESRON) 2, guided-missile cruiser USS Leyte Gulf (CG 55), and the guided-missile destroyers USS Barry (DDG 52) and USS Bulkeley (DDG 84) returned to Naval Station Norfolk.While deployed, Enterprise Strike Group served in the U.S. 5th and 6th Fleet areas of responsibility, conducting missions from counter-piracy and counter-terrorism to Operation Odyssey Dawn, Enduring Freedom and New Dawn.Enterprise and CVW-1 flew more than 1,450 sorties in support of Operation Enduring Freedom in Afghanistan and Operation New Dawn in Iraq. Enterprise and the strike group ships also disrupted nine piracy attempts, resulting in the capture of 75 suspected pirates and the detention of 18 more.“The ships of this strike group have done it all,” said Rear Adm. Terry B. Kraft, commander, CSG 12. “Simultaneous combat deployments to the 5th and 6th Fleet areas of responsibility showed what these great Americans can do. They have earned a hero’s welcome here in Norfolk.”The carrier, commanded by Capt. Dee L. Mewbourne, traveled nearly 60,000 miles after leaving Norfolk Jan. 13 to support theater security cooperation and maritime security cooperation efforts while deployed. “Everything about this deployment has been unique,” said Mewbourne. “Our Sailors and Marines flexed to perform every mission asked of them to their highest ability, often with great innovation, and always with unqualified success. The crew answered their nation’s call with courage and grit, and I share in their tremendous pride of all we accomplished.”Enterprise CSG is comprised of CSG 12, Enterprise, CVW-1, DESRON 2, Leyte Gulf, Barry, Bulkeley, and USS Mason (DDG 87). The squadrons of CVW-1 embarked in Enterprise are Strike Fighter Squadron (VFA) 11 “Red Rippers,” VFA-136 “Knighthawks,” VFA-211 “Fighting Checkmates,” Marine Fighter Attack Squadron (VMFA) 251 “Thunderbolts,” Carrier Airborne Early Warning Squadron (VAW) 123 “Screwtops,” Carrier Tactical Electronic Warfare Squadron (VAQ) 137 “Rooks,” Fleet Logistics Support Squadron (VRC) 40 “Rawhides,” and Helicopter Anti-Submarine Squadron (HS) 11 “Dragonslayers.”Mason is scheduled to return to Norfolk later this month.[mappress]Source: navy, July 18, 2011; View post tag: Enterprise Back to overview,Home naval-today USS Enterprise Carrier Strike Group Arrives in Norfolk USS Enterprise Carrier Strike Group Arrives in Norfolk View post tag: USS Share this article
Back to overview,Home naval-today UK finally starting work on Type 26 frigates View post tag: Royal Navy View post tag: BAe Systems November 4, 2016 UK finally starting work on Type 26 frigates View post tag: Type 26 Share this article UK’s Defence Secretary announced on Friday that first steel for the Royal Navy’s new Type 26 frigates would be cut in summer 2017.Michael Fallon made the announcement during a visit to Govan in Scotland and added that the deal was subject to final contract negotiations.Fallon also announced a £100 million contract with MBDA to deliver the Sea Ceptor self-defense missile system for the ship. The contract will support design work, allow equipment to be manufactured to equip the entire Type 26 fleet, and install the system on the first three ships.This follows a £183 million investment in the maritime indirect fire system, the Type 26’s 5-inch calibre gun earlier in the summer, bringing the total investment in the program so far to £1.9 billion.The construction start for the Type 26 program was delayed indefinitely back in July this year after the Ministry of Defence reportedly rejected BAE Systems proposal for a £275 million reduction in price along with a promise to start work on time.The Ministry was looking for savings of £500m in the £11.5 billion Type 26 program.The 2015 Strategic Defence and Security Review (SDSR15) cut the number of anti-submarine Type 26 Global Combat Ships to be built from 13 to 8.The secretary also announced that the MOD plans to sign a contract shortly to start building of the two additional offshore patrol vessels (OPVs) pledged to in the SDSR, both of which will be delivered in 2019, protecting jobs on the Clyde before the start of the Type 26 programme gets fully under way. Authorities
Oxo-to-Branston owner Premier Foods this week revealed its plans for RHM’s bakeries, following its acquisition of the food-to-milling group last December.In the cakes division, Manor Bakeries will be integrated into Premier’s operations in St Albans. And RHM’s Avana Cakes will be integrated into the RHM’s RF Brookes business, due to their common supply chain and customer base.The cakes division head office in Windsor will close in the first half of 2008. And cakes’ van sales operation is to close in the second half of the year, due to the high costs in servicing customers, it said.Sales for the cakes division since acquisition were expected to be ahead of the comparable periods in 2006, with a particularly strong performance by Mr Kipling, it added, following a trading update for the six months to 30 June. Gwyn Tyley, director of investor relations, told British Baker that its bread bakeries would continue to operate as a separate division.A “long-term strategic question” hung over the milling division, he admitted, as Rank Hovis produced more flour than the bakeries used. “This is something we need to review in the long term, but we won’t get to it for a long time,” he said.Premier said that in the bread bakeries division, sales and trading profit since acquisition were anti-cipated to be lower than the comparable period in 2006, impacted by increases in wheat prices and competitors’ promotions.It said it plans to recover further increases in wheat prices since February through bread price rises in the weeks ahead. And it also revealed plans for TV advertising for Hovis ’Best of Both’ bread and the launch of a new seeded Hovis loaf, starting shortly.
University President Fr. John Jenkins commended President Joe Biden on his inauguration as the 46th President of the United States in a statement Wednesday.“I congratulate Joseph R. Biden Jr. on his elevation today to president of the United States, becoming only the second Catholic in American history to assume the presidency and, like the nation’s first Catholic president, John F. Kennedy, a recipient of Notre Dame’s highest honor, the Laetare Medal,” he said in the release.Jenkins recounted his comments when he presented Biden with the award, a decision that sparked controversy when announced in 2016. The Medal is annually awarded to American Catholics who uplift the ideals of the Church and service society.“In awarding the Laetare Medal in 2016 to then-Vice President Biden and former House Speaker John Boehner, I said, ‘Vice President Biden reminded his fellow Democrats that those in the other party are “‘our opponents, not our enemies,”’” Jenkins said. “May his leadership help quell the venomous enmity so prevalent in our nation today.”In addition, Jenkins expressed hopefulness in the spirit of bipartisanship Biden could bring to the White House.“We can only be encouraged by the auspicious beginning to inauguration day for President Biden, when he attended Mass at the Cathedral of St. Matthew the Apostle in the company of the House and Senate Republican and Democratic leaders,” he said.Jenkins urged all Americans to pray for the new president and the country.Tags: President Biden, President John Jenkins, Presidential Inauguration
Of course, there are many other resolutions that could be included in this list. Make a few and stick to them this year. Gardening will be much more enjoyable if you follow a plan. The new year is a time for making new personal resolutions. Consider also making some resolutions to prevent problems in the garden throughout 2018. These gardening resolutions could even be easier to keep than personal resolutions like eating less and exercising more.Resolution 1: Make a plan.Plan a landscape and work from this plan. Many landscapes develop based on gifted plants or those bought on impulse. The end result can be a hodgepodge of plants with no unity in design. Some landscapes look like a delivery truck, loaded with nursery stock, crashed in the yard and spilled random plants all around.Take the time to develop a landscape plan that includes ideas for expansion, then add plants as time and budget allow. When shopping at nurseries, look for plants to complete the landscape instead of buying whatever plant is in bloom.Resolution 2: Use water wisely.Water plants in the early morning. Afternoon watering wets foliage that does not have an opportunity to dry before nightfall. This extended period of wetness provides a favorable environment for the development of fungal diseases in the garden. The best time to water a lawn is between 2 a.m. and 6 a.m. During this time, the water pressure is highest, disruption of the water pattern from wind is low and water lost to the atmosphere due to evaporation is nonexistent. Morning irrigation supplies water when the landscape is able to use it, and the rest evaporates throughout the day.Resolution 3: Cut back on inputs.Don’t use fertilizer as a cure-all for garden problems. In response to a plant problem, it’s natural to reach for the fertilizer bag. Soil sample results provide the best fertilization recommendations, and fertilization should ensure the proper health and vigor of the landscape as a whole. A common misconception is that if a plant looks bad, then it must need more fertilizer.Take the time to look carefully at poorly performing plants to determine the cause of their problems. Insects, diseases and environmental conditions are often the cause. Contact your local University of Georgia Cooperative Extension office if the cause is unknown. Many plant problems can be diagnosed over the telephone or by bringing a sample of the plant to the office.Resolution 4: Just read the instructions. Read and follow the instructions on all chemical labels to the letter. The labels of landscape chemicals contain a wealth of information. The pesticide label is the best guide for safely and effectively using pesticides. The directions on the label are there to help achieve maximum benefits with minimum risk. Don’t fall into the trap of thinking, “If a little bit is good, then a lot is better!” An increased dose of garden chemicals beyond the labeled rate can result in vegetables harvested with pesticide residues and damage to the plants being treated.Follow the label each time you mix and use the pesticide as well as when storing or disposing of the pesticide. Use of any pesticide in any way that does not comply with label directions and precautions is illegal. It may also be ineffective against the pests and, even worse, pose risks to users or the environment.
Governor Douglas Details Health Care Reform PlanStowe. – In a keynote address to the Vermont Chamber of Commerce September 14,Governor Jim Douglas outlined his comprehensive vision for quality,affordable health care for all Vermonters.Governor Douglas’ health insurance plan would immediately reduce premiumsby 15 percent for every Vermonter with an individual insurance plan;decrease the number of uninsured Vermonters by 20 percent in the firstyear; offer low and middle income Vermonters a premium discount of up to60 percent; and reduce, by 50 percent, the cost for a small business tostart providing insurance to employees.”Taken together, my reforms make insurance more affordable for individualsand small businesses, reduce the number of uninsured Vermonters by 20percent in the first year alone, offer an economic incentive to helpexpand the private market, and make Vermont more attractive to healthinsurance providers.” Governor Douglas said.”But we won’t stop there,” Douglas added. “I will work every year to makeprogress toward our goal of affordable and accessible health care foreveryone.”The Governor’s remarks are below.###Prescription for a Healthy Vermont: The Douglas Partnership for AffordableHealth CareSeptember 14, 2004I want to thank you for the opportunity to be here.Today, like a doctor might say after a lengthy examination, ‘I’ve got somegood news, and I’ve got some bad news.’The good news first:In Vermont, we are very fortunate to have a medical community thatprovides high quality care; and when we need them most, they are there forus.The doctors, nurses, nurse practitioners, aides, technicians, and theadministrative staffs at our hospitals and clinics are intelligent,competent, hardworking, and dedicated to providing the highest qualitypatient care possible.Complementing our primary care system is a family of community healthservices, and charity services so that no one who needs immediate care isturned away for lack of insurance.Now for the bad news: Vermont, like the nation, must confront a serioushealth care crisis.Health care costs are too high, mandates too many and options too few.For working families and their employers, insurance premiums haveskyrocketed while low cost options are being eliminated as insuranceproviders abandon Vermont’s burdensome regulatory regime.Patients are losing direct control of their care and government is failingto reimburse doctors and hospitals for the cost of treating the nearly onein five Vermonters covered by the state Medicaid program. As a result,those costs are shifted to the overwhelming majority of Vermonters who payescalating private insurance premiums.Vermont has the second most generous Medicaid program in the nation, andas a result we are headed for a $250 million deficit in the Health AccessTrust Fund by 2008. This deficit represents a serious threat to the mostvulnerable Vermonters who rely on this program and the taxpayers who fundit.The worst thing we could do is expand the program further, causing it tocrumble under the burden of its own weight. Instead, we must saveMedicaid in a responsible way while protecting the already overburdenedtaxpayer.In reforming our health care system to give every Vermonter access toaffordable insurance and care, there are no easy answers, no cure-alltonics-only tough choices.Policymakers have wrestled with this issue for decades. Anyone whosuggests that real reform is easy, can be bought on the cheap, or would bebetter administered by big government rather than doctors and health careproviders, is at best clouded by ideological fantasy and at worst peddlingpolitical snake oil.Some claim that if everyone were in the same government-run,taxpayer-financed system, we could cut down on paperwork, saving enough tocover everyone with state insurance.I don’t know about you, but one thing I know is that government isn’t theplace to look when it comes to reducing red tape.And monopolies in any service, including health care or health insurance,have never been known to have lower administrative costs, despite hopefulforecasts to the contrary.True reform must be comprehensive. We need to do more than just change thefinancing method.If costs continue to increase at the current rate, it won’t matter whatpocket the money comes from because they’ll all be empty.We need to adopt true reform that tackles the root causes of rising healthcare costs, opens our system up to low cost options, encourages healthydecisions and preventative care, and attacks health concerns at theirinception before they develop into more serious and costly ailments.And we need to maintain a patient-centered system that offers moreindividual choice and keeps health care decisions in the hands of patientsand doctors, not government bureaucrats.This is no time for more government gimmicks-we need real reform. Andthat is what I offer the people of Vermont.COMMONSENSE HEALTH CARE REFORM CRITERIANow, I know we’re in an election year… and I figure my plan will attracta fair number of critics, all with their own ideas and schemes on how tosolve the health care crisis in Vermont.Any plan that is put forth to reform healthcare in Vermont must first “dono harm.”So I want to lay out for you several commonsense criteria that anyresponsible health care plan must meet.1. A responsible health care plan must begin to lower the cost of care forinsured Vermonters who are already struggling to keep up withever-increasing insurance premiums;2. A responsible health care plan must be patient-centered and putdecisions in the hands of patients and their doctors, not politicians.3. A responsible health care plan must increase options and choices forconsumers;4. A responsible health care plan must be financially sustainable;5. A responsible health care plan must open competition among insurers touse market forces to drive down costs;A responsible plan must also be a comprehensive plan. The health carecrisis in Vermont is not solved with a single reform, a single initiative,or a silver bullet. A responsible plan must contain both short-term andlong-term reforms to bend the cost curve, as well as initiatives toimprove the quality of life for all Vermonters.STABILIZING AND REFORMING THE INSURANCE MARKETI’m here today to offer a responsible and comprehensive plan that meetsthese criteria.My health insurance plan does four things:It immediately reduces premiums by 15 percent for every Vermonter with anindividual insurance plan; it decreases the number of uninsured Vermontersby 20 percent; it offers low and middle income Vermonters a premiumdiscount of up to 60 percent; and it reduces, by 50 percent, the cost fora small business to start providing insurance to employees.Here’s how we’re going to do it:We will begin by stabilizing the volatile individual insurance market andlowering premiums for the most overburdened Vermonters.Individual Vermonters and small businesses bear a disproportionatepercentage of premium costs. As premiums in these smaller markets shootskyward and more people are forced out, premiums for all markets increaseas insurance companies seek to balance their risks.To curb this damaging cycle, I have proposed a Small Market AccessReinsurance Trust.This reinsurance mechanism has the effect of a high risk pool and willstabilize the individual insurance market, lower those premiums by 15percent, insure 1,000 more Vermonters, prevent thousands from losing theircoverage, and encourage the return of those insurance companies that havefled.The next step is to motivate small businesses to provide insurance fortheir workers.In Vermont today, businesses with fewer than 25 employees are far lesslikely to offer coverage. I will again propose a tax credit for smallbusinesses so that offering health care to their workers is an affordableoption.This tax credit proposal would cover thousands more working Vermonters andencourage small businesses to become partners in keeping their workershealthy.The plan is designed around a Health Savings Account where the employerand employee can deposit a portion of wages tax-free. Like a debit card,the worker then uses the money in the HSA for co-pays and deductibles.But participants would have the option of choosing any private plan.In January, I will also present to the Legislature a Premium DiscountProgram that will offer more than 10,000 additional Vermontersincome-sensitive assistance so they can purchase health insurance in theprivate market.For example, individuals with household income between 150 and 200 percentof the Federal Poverty Level (FPL) will receive a premium discount of 60percent off the lowest cost small group or association plan offered by theprivate market. If the individual chooses a high deductible plan-like anHSA-the program will pay 60 percent of the individual’s deductibleexpenses.Individuals and households with income between 200 and 250 percent of FPLwill receive a 40 percent premium discount, and those between 250 and 300percent of FPL will receive a 20 percent discount.Taken together, these reforms make insurance more affordable forindividuals and small businesses, reduce the number of uninsuredVermonters by 20 percent in the first year alone, offer an economicincentive to help expand the private market, and make Vermont moreattractive to private health insurance providers.But we won’t stop there-I will work every year to make progress toward ourgoal of affordable and accessible health care for everyone.LOWERING PRESCRIPTION DRUG PRICESAnother piece of the health care puzzle is the high cost of prescriptiondrugs. As part of my strategy for reducing the cost of pharmaceuticals inour Medicaid program, we formed the nation’s first multi-state buying poolfor prescription drugs.Following our lead, 6 additional states have joined and the program savedVermont $2 million last year, and is projected to save us $3 million inthe current fiscal year.We will continue to pursue our suit against the FDA for access to theCanadian prescription drug market. But we can’t stop there; Vermontersdeserve to get affordable prescription drugs from our local pharmacieshere at home.That is why I will continue to encourage consumers to pursue genericequivalents, and strongly urge Congress to change patent laws, speed theapproval of new generics and create more competition among brand namemanufacturers.Patients and physicians must also be aware of the costs associated withthe products they consume or prescribe, so we can factor price into ourhealth care decisions.That is why my administration is developing commonsense mechanisms formeaningful price disclosures.The current drug pricing system is also very cumbersome and complex. Toempower employers and insurers who rely on pharmacy benefit managers tocontain the spiraling costs of pharmaceuticals, my administration willadvance policies that offer employers pass-through pricing alternativesand the ability to audit to ensure they are receiving all rebates andsavings they deserve.And, taking this important effort one step further, in the near future Iwill announce an innovative plan to help employers afford prescriptiondrug benefits for their employees.EMPOWERING CHILDREN: THE FIT & HEALTHY KIDS INITIATIVENo comprehensive reform of Vermont’s health care system is completewithout discussing how to influence healthy choices among Vermonters.You may have heard of my Fit and Healthy Kids initiative aimed atpromoting coordinated school health programs, and teaching the value ofgood nutrition and regular exercise.Children who learn to make healthy decisions at a young age are far morelikely to avoid chronic and costly diseases as adults-it also has theadded benefit of helping them do better in school.The current budget fully supports this important initiative, includingfunding for a Fit and Healthy Kids Director, resources to expand youthactivity programs, community recreation programs, after-school activitiesand support for childhood nutrition programs.Under my proposal we will continue to empower our children with the toolsthey need to be fit and healthy throughout their lives.THE HEALTHY CHOICES DISCOUNTIn addition to nurturing children to live healthy lives, we need toencourage adults to take responsibility for their choices.I believe that Vermont law should allow Vermonters to receive healthinsurance discounts for taking individual responsibility for improving andprotecting their own health through healthy choices, such as not smoking,regular exercise, and preventive care. That is why I will submit thisproposal again to the General Assembly in January.COMBATING SUBSTANCE ABUSE: D.E.T.E.RPart of making healthy choices is making drug-free choices. Substanceabuse impacts all Vermonters – predominantly our youth – and carriesenormous long-term costs.My DETER program was the first serious effort to comprehensively combatthe growing drug problem in our state.We’ve added clinicians and case managers to meet increasing demand in ouroutpatient treatment and drug courts. We’ve placed additional studentassistance counselors in our schools.We’ve supported the prevention work of community coalitions. We’veincreased penalties for those who seek to poison Vermonters for profit.And we’ve expanded support for opiate treatment and recovery centers.Addressing this issue requires a continuous and long-term effort. There isstill much to do, and we will continue to build on the success of thisprogram.The link between my DETER program and health care costs may not beimmediately apparent. But there is no doubt that substance abuse is achronic and progressive disease that is an enormous drain on our healthcare resources.LONG TERM REFORM: THE CHRONIC CARE INITIATIVEConsider that care for people with chronic conditions like diabetes,asthma, cardiovascular disease, and arthritis account for: 76 percent ofhospital admissions; 72 percent of all physician visits; and, 78 percentof health care spending.As we know, chronic conditions increase with age-38 percent of people ages20 to 44 have one or more chronic conditions; this increases to 84 percentfor those ages 65 or over.That is why under my leadership Vermont is a national leader in addressingthe primary driver of increasing costs: the cost of providing care forpeople with chronic conditions.The current health care system evolved as a means of providing care forpeople with short-term (acute) health needs such as injuries andinfectious diseases.People with chronic illnesses do receive care through this system;however, living well with chronic conditions requires coordinated careacross health care settings. It requires putting the patient at thecenter of the care.This is a new vision for health care in Vermont.To achieve this vision, state government, insurers, business leaders,health care providers and patients are working together in a boldpublic-private partnership to achieve a system that focuses on acoordinated treatment of chronic conditions.The complete realization of this effort is nothing short of challenging-tobe sure, this is no government gimmick.Now…I know that the Chronic Care Initiative isn’t the tantalizingrhetoric of a snappy political slogan-but it is real reform, and I amconfident that this new vision for care will have an enormous impact onreducing health care costs and improving the quality of life for everyVermonter.EMPOWERING SENIORS: HEALTHY AGING AND LONG TERM CAREAs we empower Vermonters to make informed and healthy choices, we alsowant to give them a full range of options as they plan for their future.Last year, I announced an initiative to refocus the delivery of long-termcare to give elderly and disabled Vermonters the choices they desire,increase the quality of their care and reduce costs by expanding home andcommunity based long term care options.This year, I added to that initiative with a proposal to protect the nestegg of our senior citizens.Taking advantage of an anticipated Congressional action, I proposed-andthe General Assembly passed-legislation that protects low and middleincome Vermonters with private long-term care insurance from having tospend down all of their hard earned resources before becoming eligible forMedicaid.Our seniors shouldn’t have to spend their entire life savings to pay forthe high cost of care in their final years.And, within the next two weeks, we will take these efforts one stepfurther by launching a new healthy aging initiative dedicated to helpingour seniors live active, healthy lives.CONCLUSIONAs I have said, reforming our health care system is a complicatedundertaking that requires a comprehensive solution.I will be deliberate and determined as we work to address the root causesof unaffordable health care and save state programs like Dr. Dynasaur andour prescription drug plans for the most vulnerable.The details I have offered to you today are only the beginning, the firststep, in what has been-and will continue to be-a central objective of myadministration.Make no mistake: Now is the time for Vermont to take a new direction andbuild a new consensus-and I will be leading this effort.Thank you very much for inviting me to be here, and thanks especially toall of you for your commitment to Vermont.–END–
Sign up for our COVID-19 newsletter to stay up-to-date on the latest coronavirus news throughout New York View image | gettyimages.com President Obama’s plan to accept at least 10,000 war-weary Syrians desperate to resettle in the West because of a merciless civil war back home would endanger the lives of US citizens, Rep. Peter King (R-Seaford) said in a statement Thursday. King, chairman of the Homeland Security Subcommittee on Counterintelligence and Terrorism, was swift in his objection to Obama’s plan, which comes as a divided Europe struggles to comes to grips with what has been described as the largest humanitarian crisis since World War II. America, King said, is ill-equipped to properly scrutinize each individual that would enter the country in the 12-month time frame imposed by the administration. The outspoken congressmen also speculated that Middle Eastern refugees, who are mostly Muslim, could pose a threat, even invoking the Boston Marathon bombing. “This decision is in direct contrast to opinion of leading law enforcement and intelligence officials in this Administration,” King said in a statement. “We do not have the capability to vet these individuals nor will we be able to develop it in the next twelve months. The Administration is moving forward full speed ahead without the necessary security backbone in place.”“It is vital that we measure our humanitarian beliefs against the security risks of bringing more than 10,000 unknown individuals into the Homeland,” King continued. “I oppose this decision. We do not want another Boston Marathon Bombing.”Far right groups in Europe have protested decisions by their respective countries to accept downtrodden refugees, mostly Syrians fleeing a war-torn country that has endured bombings by its own government and the threat of the so-called Islamic State (IS). Fear of IS using the crisis as a cover to infiltrate Europe reached such a fever pitch that people on social media are sharing photos of men who they claim to be militants. Specifically, a before-and-after photo of a man in military gear and holding a weapon next to another of him in a green t-shirt and sunglasses went viral after Internet users accused him of being a militant. He turned out to be a former member of the Free Syrian Army, according to a recent profile of the man published by the Associated Press. The BBC was the first to refute the claims posted on social media. The divisive issue has Europe split. Germany is poised to welcome 800,000 refugees this year alone while Hungary’s prime minister is on record saying authorities will start arresting those crossing the border. View image | gettyimages.com Many blame the West’s response, or lack thereof, to the Syrian civil war for the current crisis enveloping Europe. The number of Syrians displaced due to the conflict has reached 12 million, and half of those who have been uprooted are children, according to World Vision, a Christian humanitarian organization. The plight of the refugees has dominated news coverage in recent weeks, but the worlds conscience wasn’t truly shocked until raw photos emerged of a Syrian boy’s lifeless body on a beach in Turkey, leading to an outcry of support for the migrants. The Syrian American Council, which claims to be the largest Syrian-American community organization in the US, plans to hold a “#LetThemIn” rally in Washington, DC Saturday and will call on international governments to accept more refugees. During a press briefing on Friday, White House Press Secretary Josh Earnest said the US has already given relief agencies $4 billion to help those fleeing Syria en masse. He also noted that the “top concern” when deciding on how to adopt policy related to the crisis is “the safety and security” of the United States. “I can tell you that refugees go through the most robust security process of anybody who’s contemplating travel to the United States,” he told reporters. “Refugees have to be screened by the National Counterterrorism Center, by the FBI Terrorist Screening Center. They go through databases that are maintained by DHS, the Department of Defense and the intelligence community. There is biographical and biometric information that is collected about these individuals. They have to submit to in-person interviews to discuss their case.”That process typically takes 12 to 18 months,” Earnest said. Those wishing to come to the United States must apply through the United Nations.