Tuesday, 20 September 2011 17:50

Louisiana Business: New Orleans Health, Humana, Idea Village, Sean Payton

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LouisianaKey To The Cure
Key to the Cure Gala, the kickoff to a charity shopping weekend (Thursday-Sunday, October 20-23) during which 2% of sales at Saks will benefit the cancer research programs of the Louisiana Cancer Research Consortium.

The evening will feature delectable food from approximately 35 of New Orleans’ finest restaurants and caterers, a huge assortment of beverages compliments of Republic National Distributing Co., and great New Orleans-style entertainment on every level of the store including: Acoustic Swiftness, Treme Brass Band and a Motown Review, to keep guests dancing all evening long.
Over the past 11 years, Saks stores nationwide have raised over $32 million for cancer charities through Key to the Cure. The New Orleans event has generated nearly $1.3 million locally, every penny of which went into cancer research here at home.
Key to the Cure Co-Chairs for 2011 are: Ina Davis, Russ Herman, Walter Leger, Jr, Kim Sport


New Orleans Museum of Art (NOMA) presents Wayne Gonzales: Light to Dark / Dark to Light, the artist's first solo museum show in the United States. This exhibition of paintings by nationally recognized Louisiana artist Wayne Gonzales spans from early portraits to never before seen work. Highlights range from paintings of New Orleans native Lee Harvey Oswald to the Louisiana Rigolets.


"It's a proud moment for New Orleans that a native son is returning home to have his first major U.S. exhibition here where his inspiration started," said NOMA Director Susan M. Taylor. "Wayne's first interaction with art was at NOMA and no doubt his exhibition will inspire young artists."


The exhibition features paintings depicting crowds, which Gonzales is well known for, including waiting crowds in the wake of Hurricane Katrina. The newest painting is a large blue Seated Crowd completed this year, which depicts a passive audience in a movie theater. Gonzales will also paint two original murals on the walls of the galleries that will contrast idyllic scenes of nature with war images. Wayne Gonzales: Light to Dark / Dark to Light is organized by Miranda Lash, Curator of Modern and Contemporary Art at NOMA.     


October 7: 5:30 pm - 9 pm

Opening celebrations with music by Mykia Jovan

 December 9: 6 pm

Discussion with artist Wayne Gonzales and curator Miranda Lash

New Orleans and Health Grant

Today, the City’s Health Department announced that it was awarded a $100,000 grant from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS). These funds, made available through the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) under the Affordable Care Act, help support health centers with the adoption of health information technology to support long-term improvements in quality of care, health outcomes and cost efficiencies. This is the first time the City has received a grant related to health information technology.

"Our team continues to bring in federal dollars, which will help in the long term recovery of our City," said Mayor Mitch Landrieu. "Our Health Department has shown leadership in its support for the use of electronic medical records, and this funding will allow us to expand on that work."

“This award to the City, clinics and other providers is the result of six years of dedicated work to develop access to high quality, affordable primary care for everyone. We are proud to be part of this next major effort, and we know that bringing information technology to the table will improve health care in our City,” said Dr. Karen DeSalvo, the City’s Health Commissioner. 

HHS announced awards of $8.5 million to 85 community health center programs, located in 15 of the 17 “Beacon Communities” throughout the United States, including New Orleans. The Beacon Community program works to accelerate and demonstrate the ability of health information technology to transform local health care systems. 

Since Hurricane Katrina, New Orleans’ health care sector has seen a dramatic transformation, with the evolution of a robust network of community health care clinics, the impending development of three new hospitals, and an advanced health information technology infrastructure.   

In addition to the New Orleans Health Department, Excelth, Jefferson Community Health Center, St. Charles community health center and St. Thomas community health center were also each awarded a $100,000 grant from HHS. 


 Sean Payton

Sean Payton will make a personal appearance at Aucoin Hart Jewelers in Metairie on Saturday, September 24, 2011 to sign autographs and pull the winning tickets for a raffle benefitting the Payton’s Play It Forward Foundation. 

 Saints fans can meet the man who brought the Lombardi trophy to New Orleans from 1pm to 3pm, when Sean Payton will sign one item per person as he and the Aucoin family raffle several Saints-themed prizes, including a dazzling, one-of-its-kind, custom-designed, Fleur-de-Lis  black and gold diamond ring. 

 The Fleur-de-Lis ring was meticulously designed and created by Aucoin Hart’s master craftsman and features 186 fine diamonds set on a band of 18 karat yellow and white gold.  The round brilliant cut diamonds, sparkling in white, yellow, and black, weigh a total of 3.3 carats, and the piece is valued at $15,000.

 “There is no doubt that this Fleur-de-Lis ring will someday become a family heirloom for its owner,” says Tommy Aucoin, Jr., President of Aucoin Hart Jewelers.  “The Aucoin Hart Foundation is delighted to both raise funds for Sean Payton’s worthwhile causes and present this masterpiece to a lucky winner on the 24th.”


Other prizes in the raffle include an autographed electric guitar commemorating the Saint’s Superbowl victory, one of only 44 produced and a true collector’s item.  The guitar is custom- engraved with the Fleur de Lis, the Superbowl XLIV Logo and the Final Score of the game.  An autographed Saints football and an autographed Saints helmet are also up for grabs in the raffle.  In addition, the first 250 people to arrive on Saturday, September 24 will receive a free autographed Play It Forward football. 


100% of the proceeds from raffle ticket sales benefit the Play It Forward Foundation.  Sean Payton and his wife Beth founded Play It Forward to support organizations fighting at the forefront for children in need.  Their mission is to improve the lives of families and children in the areas of health, education and social welfare.


Raffle tickets are $20 each or $100 for six and can be purchased at the Metairie Road store or on the phone at 504-834-9999. The public is invited to stop by Aucoin Hart Jewelers at 1525 Metairie Road to view the amazing prizes, on display from now until the drawing on September 24.  

Idea Village

Applications for the 2012 Water Challenge, an IDEAxelerator program, are now open.

The Water Challenge is a collaborative initiative of The Idea Village and the Greater New Orleans Foundation (GNOF) focused on nurturing entrepreneurs with high-growth ventures in the water industry. Going into its second year, a priority in 2012 will be innovative solutions to flood management.


 Humana Rating

A.M. Best Co. has affirmed the financial strength ratings (FSR) and issuer credit ratings (ICR) of the insurance subsidiaries of Humana Inc.(Humana) A.M. Best also has affirmed the ICR of “bbb-” and debt ratings of Humana.

“A.M. Best’s Ratings & the Treatment of Debt.”

Additionally, A.M. Best has affirmed the FSR of B++ (Good) and the ICR of “bbb+” of Kanawha Insurance Company (Lancaster, SC) (Kanawha). The outlook for the FSR is stable, while the outlook for the ICR has been revised to negative from stable. The outlook for all remaining ratings is stable.

The rating affirmations for the subsidiaries of Humana (excluding Kanawha) acknowledge the organization’s consistent operating revenue development through membership growth, primarily in the Medicare Advantage products. Despite the prolonged economic downturn, growth in earnings has continued into the first half of 2011. Humana maintains significant liquidity, which allows the organization to execute its business development strategy, fulfilling operating and investment cash flow requirements. Humana’s debt-to-capital ratio was well within A.M. Best’s guidelines for the ratings and below many of its peers.

Offsetting rating factors reflect Humana’s concentration in government sponsored programs, which includes Medicare Advantage and Medicaid. While these lines of business have proven to be profitable, their level of concentration in the organization’s business mix exposes the health insurance operation to significant business concentration risk. The organization’s commercial segment has not exhibited equally favorable operating trends, reflecting a somewhat lower rate of revenue development as well as flat to declining earnings.

The FSR of A- (Excellent) and ICR of “a-” have been affirmed for the following subsidiaries of Humana Inc.:

  • Humana Insurance Company
  • Humana Medical Plan, Inc.
  • Humana Health Plan, Inc.
  • Humana Health Benefits Plan of Louisiana, Inc.
  • Humana Health Plan of Texas, Inc.
  • Humana Health Insurance Company of Florida, Inc.
  • Humana Benefits Plan of Illinois, Inc.
  • Humana Health Plan of Ohio, Inc.
  • Humana Employers Health Plan of Georgia, Inc.
  • Humana Insurance Company of New York
  • HumanaAdvantage Care Plan
  • Humana Wisconsin Health Organization Insurance Corporation
  • Humana Insurance Company of Kentucky
  • Cariten Health Plan, Inc.
  • CarePlus Health Plans, Inc.
  • HumanaDental Insurance Company
  • DentiCare Inc.
  • CompBenefits Insurance Company
  • CompBenefits Company
  • CompBenefits Dental, Inc.
  • The Dental Concerns, Inc.

The FSR of B+ (Good) and ICR of “bbb-” have been affirmed for the following subsidiaries of Humana Inc.:

  • Humana Health Plans of Puerto Rico, Inc.
  • Humana Insurance of Puerto Rico, Inc.

The following debt ratings have been affirmed:

Humana Inc.—

-- “bbb-” on $500 million 6.45% senior unsecured notes, due 2016

-- “bbb-” on $300 million 6.3% senior unsecured notes, due 2018

-- “bbb-” on $500 million 7.2% senior unsecured notes, due 2018

-- “bbb-” on $250 million 8.15% senior unsecured notes, due 2038

The following debt ratings on the shelf registration have been affirmed:

Humana Inc.—

-- “bbb-” on senior unsecured debt securities

-- “bb+” on subordinated debt securities

-- “bb” on preferred shares

The principal methodologies used in determining these ratings is Best’s Credit Rating Methodology -- Global Life and Non-Life Insurance Edition, which provides a comprehensive explanation of A.M. Best’s rating process and highlights the different rating criteria employed. Additional key criteria utilized include: “Rating Health Insurance Companies”; “Risk Management and the Rating Process for Insurance Companies”; “Understanding BCAR for Life and Health Insurers”; Rating Members of Insurance Groups”; and “A.M. Best’s Ratings & the Treatment of Debt.” Methodologies can be found at www.ambest.com/ratings/methodology.


Politics with a Punch--This Thursday--featuring Lt. Governor Jay Dardenne

Bayoubuzz Staff

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