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Posted: February 16, 2013 7:07 p.m.

Human resources managers try to better understand health care reform

Human resource managers from around the area gathered in Madison Wednesday for a seminar on the health care reform, a topic that has human resource professionals struggling to prepare for the health insurance changes that will take place under Obamacare.

The seminar, titled “The Health Care Reform – Are You Prepared?,” was put on by Apollo Staffing, a local staffing company, and led by Alan Gilbert, who handles business development at Essential StaffCARE, the nation’s largest provider of health insurance and benefits to the staffing and temporary employment industry.

Gilbert gave businesses a two-hour presentation about what they should expect in the coming months and years regarding health care reform. Attendees discussed concerns they had and how the law will affect their businesses and hiring practices. Gilbert concluded with steps that businesses should take immediately to ensure their business is compliant with the law.

“This law is much more complicated and will require a lot more time and effort than I originally thought,” Paul Logue, human resources manager for local industry Fibervisions, said in a follow-up email Friday. When asked about the biggest issues he’s dealing with, Logue said, “Trying to become cognizant of all the regulations and timetables to become compliant.”

Apollo Staffing, which provides employees for many local industries and businesses, plans to offer more events in the future to help educate local businesses on the upcoming changes taking place.

General Manager Jamie Cummings said Apollo is the only staffing company in the area to have a newly-certified health reform specialist on staff.

The seminar was part of a new “Lunch and Learn” series begun by Apollo. It was held at the James Madison Conference Center in Madison. Lunch was provided by The Chop House Grill and paid for by Apollo Staffing; many local businesses provided raffle items to the attendees.

For a copy of the presentation or for more information on the next “Lunch and Learn” event, contact staffing representative Carley Smith at csmith@staffapollo.com.

“Education is the first step. We all need to understand the health care reform law before we know how to react to it,” Jamie Cummings of Apollo Staffing said in an email after the seminar. “Part of our job at Apollo Staffing is to help educate our clients and our community. We are all facing the same issues and can learn from each other.”

In related news, Cummings announced that Apollo had earned the Best of Staffing award for the second year in a row. She said the prestigious award places Apollo among the best staffing companies in the nation as ranked by its clients and peers.

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