Benefits update 10-22-15


Working with our benefits consultants, Power Group, we took our health and dental plans to market this year, which means we asked insurers all over Kansas to bring us their best rates. In order to offer you more choices, we also asked for quotes on several new types of coverage. We think you will be pretty happy with the results.

Our Health Insurance rates are going down in 2016. Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Kansas was very competitive in their health insurance pricing for 2016, due in part to the fact that as a group we kept healthcare costs down. Because our pharmacy costs are higher than average (compared to the Blue Cross Blue Shield of Kansas statewide book of business), Power Group recommended that we provide more incentive to utilize generic drugs by increasing copays on brand-name drugs in Option B.

  • Rates for the Option B $500/$1,000 deductible buy-up plan will decrease by about 8%.

The prescription drug copays for 2016 in Option B will be $15 for generics, $50 for brand name formulary drugs, and $75 for brand-name non-formulary drugs.

  • Rates for the Option A $3,000/$6,000 deductible plan will decrease by 2%.

In Option A, the Qualified High Deductible Health Plan, we removed the drug copays. Prescription drugs are still subject to the $3,000/$6,000 deductible. In 2016 we will continue both the semi-monthly and semi-annual employer HSA contributions.

Our Dental Insurance Rates will be about 25% lower.

We will be changing carriers on January 1 to Delta Dental for our dental coverage. Our new policy will allow a maximum of four cleanings per year, but otherwise is essentially the same.

Cancer Insurance rates are staying at 2015 levels.

New coverage:

We are expanding our benefit options to allow you to tailor your personal insurance coverage to better fit your life.

  • Vision: Eye-Med vision coverage will begin January 1. This coverage pays for exams and lenses every 12 months and frames every 24 months. In-network there is a $10 copay for exams, lenses are covered 100% after a $25 copay, and frames reimbursed up to $130 with a 20% discount for higher-cost frames. Monthly premiums: Employee/$5.99; Employee + Spouse/$11.39; Employee + Children/$11.99; Family/$17.63. Premiums will be pre-tax.
  • Accident Expense: Assurity Accident Insurance coverage will provide benefits for an insured’s medical care, death or dismemberment resulting from the insured being in a covered accident.
  • Critical Illness: Assurity Critical Illness pays a lump-sum benefit for the diagnosis of specific illnesses, conditions, or procedures.
  • Disability Income: Assurity Disability pays a monthly benefit if the insured is totally disabled due to an accident or sickness after a 14-day waiting period. Maximum benefit period is 6 months and there is a 12-month pre-existing condition limitation. The premium is age-banded.

More information including benefit summaries and rate tables will be ready during the next couple of weeks so you can make an informed decision. Open enrollment meetings will be held on Wednesday, November 18 and enrollment forms will be due not later than Monday, November 23. New deductions will be effective with the December 11 paycheck.

3 thoughts on “Benefits update 10-22-15

  1. Natalie Moreland on said:

    Important question: Since we’re changing dental companies, will there be a waiting period for certain kinds of dental work? Also, when should we expect to have copies of the benefit summaries.


  2. Stephen Lusk on said:

    Since we already have dental coverage there should not be an additional waiting period for any covered dental work. If you are in the middle of a lengthy procedure or dental treatment plan it’s a good idea to check that your dentist is in the Delta network. Although the Delta plan benefits are the same and their discounts will be greater on average, and even though the out of network benefits in our new plan are the same as in-network, an out-of-network dentist has the ability to bill you for the balance above what Delta pays. If you are in the middle of a dental treatment plan AND your dentist is out of network, please let me know and we will follow up with Delta.
    Benefit summaries will be available in time for the open enrollment meetings on the 18th, if not before.

  3. Stephen Lusk on said:

    Benefit Summaries for our 2016 Blue Cross Blue Shield of Kansas health plan options have been posted to L:Library Forms for Staff/HR Forms/Benefits and Health Insurance