BCBSNC launches private exchange for employersIncreased flexibility and choice offered
CHAPEL HILL, N.C. – Blue Cross and Blue Shield of North Carolina (BCBSNC) introduces the BlueBenefits Center, a private exchange to help employers stabilize the amount they spend each year on health care, while offering employees more choices for personalized health insurance. This new tool will be available to groups of 51 employees or more with plan effective dates beginning Sept. 1.
“Employers are moving away from the one-size-fits-all model of health insurance. They recognize that someone 26 and single has different coverage needs than someone who is 48, married and has kids,” said Steve Crist, BCBSNC vice president of group market sales. “With the help of their employer’s financial contribution, employees can use the BlueBenefits Center to choose a plan that fits their needs and their budget.”
Currently, most employers choose to offer only one or two health insurance plans for the entire company. Their choice of plans is based on the overall health and health care usage of the employee population. This leaves employees few options for copayment amounts, deductible limits and other out-of-pocket expenses.
BlueBenefits Center offers more flexibility and choice
Through the BlueBenefits Center, employers can now offer up to four different medical plans that can help them meet their company’s wellness goals, while engaging their employees in their own health and well-being through increased options.
Employers set a monthly, annual or per-paycheck dollar amount that they will contribute toward an employee’s health insurance plan. Then, they choose up to four medical plans from a menu of 18, ACA-compliant options in varying metallic benefit levels, as well as other benefits (such as dental, vision, disability coverage and life insurance).
Once the employer’s selections are loaded into the customized, private and secure BlueBenefits Center, employees can then log in and begin the online enrollment process. Using a guided tool, employees will be asked a series of questions regarding their health status and how they use their current plan. Based on the employees’ input, BlueBenefits Center will recommend plans that best fits their needs.
For example, an individual with fewer health concerns may choose a lower-cost, higher-deductible plan while an individual with chronic medical conditions might choose a plan with smaller copayments and lower deductibles.
Participation in private exchanges, such as the BlueBenefits Center, is anticipated to grow from 1 million in 2014 to 40 million by 2018 and approximately 70 percent of employers with more than 50 employees say they are likely or somewhat likely to use these exchanges to provide health insurance for employees.
To learn more about BlueBenefits Center, contact an authorized BCBSNC agent or sales representative.