by Christopher Freeburn | March 19, 2013 3:34 pm
Privacy advocates are up in arms over a new health insurance requirement at pharmacy chain CVS (NYSE:CVS).
The retailer is demanding that employees on the company’s insurance plan undergo health screenings and report a range of personal data to its insurance provider by May 1. Employees who fail to comply with the policy will see their insurance premiums rise by $600 a year, the Boston Herald notes.
In order to fulfill the requirement, CVS employees will have to see a doctor, who will measure their height, weight, blood pressure, glucose, blood lipids and body fat. The company will cover the cost of the reviews and tests.
Before the data can be sent to CVS’s insurance provider, employees have to sign a form declaring that the health screenings were performed voluntarily. If the form isn’t signed, employee health insurance premiums will jump $50 a month.
The founder of Patient Privacy Rights, an advocacy group, called the policy “coercive and invasive.” He noted that the rising cost of health insurance was driving companies to shed workers who were in poor health.
CVS’s new policy comes as a number of large companies are facing higher insurance costs and unexpected fees due to the implementation of President Barack Obama’s health care law.
Shares of CVS climbed more than 1% in Tuesday afternoon trading.
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