Coping with Cancer - Human Resource Executive Online

November 16, 2015

“For people who have cancer, continuing to work makes them feel like they are normal, life is normal, and this is just something they are dealing with on the side,” says Laurel Pickering, president and CEO of the Northeast Business Group on Health in New York. “It’s really helpful because it helps them feel like their diagnosis is not as disruptive and tragic as it could be.”

Press Release

NEBGH Honors Three Hospitals for Patient Safety and Quality Improvements

November 12, 2015

The awards were presented at NEBGH’s second annual Leapfrog Hospital Awards Breakfast: Bronx Lebanon Hospital Center and Harlem Hospital Center each received the Excellence in Patient Safety and Quality Award; Stamford Hospital in Stamford, Connecticut received the Greatest Leaps in Patient Safety and Quality Award.

The awards were based on a combination of factors including the hospitals’ Leapfrog survey results and Safety Score. This information is publicly reported at

“I commend these hospitals for their deep commitment to transparency, and for ensuring high-quality, safe care for their patients,” said Leah Binder, president and CEO of The Leapfrog Group. “We are proud to stand with the Northeast Business Group on Health as a key advocate for transparency in the New York metro area and Connecticut, and urge all hospitals to match these top performers in their pursuit of radical quality improvement and value-driven care.”

Easing workplace depression - Crain's Benefits Outlook

November 8, 2015

The Northeast Business Group on Health began looking at depression care several years ago, spurred by high rates of antidepressant prescription claims paid by employers and low rates of depression reported by health plans. In 2012, the group launched One Voice, a plan to integrate behavioral health into primary care.

The initiative was modeled after a collaborative approach made popular in markets such as Minnesota, where large group practices and regional nonprofit health plans dominate.

But in New York, where small physician practices and for-profit health plans are common, paying for behavioral health services in primary-care settings, was “very challenging,” said Laurel Pickering, the health coalition’s president and CEO.

Though the initiative didn’t pan out as planned, it lives on as part of a statewide primary care transformation project, Ms. Pickering said.

Meanwhile, NEBGH is working to raise CEO awareness of depression in the workplace, while some of its member companies are focusing on employee education and access to care.

Press Release

CEO's Gather in New York for the First Summit on Mental Health in the Workplace

October 29, 2015

The National Alliance on Mental Illness of New York City (NAMINYC Metro) and Northeast Business Group on Health (NEBGH) co-hosted the first-ever CEO Summit on Mental Health in the Workplace in New York City. In partnership with the Kennedy Forum, the Mayor’s Fund to Advance New York City and the Partnership for Workplace Mental Health, Chief Executives Officers from over a dozen companies representing several industries met to discuss how companies can foster a culture that supports the mental health of their employees.

Press Release

Patient Safety Improvements Remain Sluggish, but Some Hospitals Shine: 2015 Hospital Safety Scores Released

October 28, 2015

In New York, New Jersey, Massachusetts and Connecticut, grades were assigned to 290 hospitals with 96 receiving an A, the highest letter grade. Twenty-seven of those hospitals have received “Straight As” since the inception of the Score in 2012. Massachusetts had the most number of hospitals (35) receiving an A, followed by New Jersey (32), New York (25) and Connecticut (4). Among the New York State hospitals receiving an A grade, ten are located within New York City’s five boroughs.

“NEBGH applauds The Leapfrog Group in providing safety scores to the public. Transparency of hospital quality information is essential for consumers to make informed decisions of where they can receive the safest care,” said Laurel Pickering, President and CEO of Northeast Business Group on Health. “We also applaud the hospitals who work hard every day to improve care. Even though great strides have been made by so many hospitals, others have slipped or have not improved at all. For this reason, we need to be diligent in providing quality and value information to ensure accountability.”


Employers struggle with cancer care - Crain's Health Pulse

October 28, 2015

Many employers are at a loss when it comes to determining the best and most cost-effective treatment plans for their workers who are diagnosed with cancer. A recent report from the Northeast Business Group on Health said employers cited cancer as the most complex employee health condition they encounter, because of the dual challenge of supporting workers during a difficult time as well as paying for their treatment. Insurers were not much help. “My plans always respond with information about activities instead of outcomes,” one employer told NEBGH. Nationally, cancer treatment accounts for 12% of total medical costs for employers but only 1% of medical claims, according to the report. Employers spent $125 billion on cancer treatment in 2010 and incurred $139 billion in indirect costs related to employee productivity. Costs rise as new specialty drugs and treatments for cancer become available, the report noted. NEBGH recommends that employers offer workers who are diagnosed with cancer comprehensive educational resources that help them select the best treatment options at each stage of their disease.