Commissioners debate need for insurance advisor

McLennan County commissioners will contemplate approving a contract to employ a wellness insurance consultant with hopes the particular person can support employees and save the county income.

But commissioners are unable to provide a cost savings estimate and have not researched how a lot of insurance coverage complaints or appeals personnel have filed to date.

Commissioners final week approved the creation of a $ 48,000 yearlong contract for RM Mayes Inc. to educate county personnel on how to decide on and use their insurance coverage strategies. The advisor also will set up relationships with overall health care suppliers and perhaps begin a wellness program.

The contract will be reviewed and voted on at Tuesday’s meeting of the McLennan County Commissioners Court.

RoseMary Mayes, owner of RM Mayes Inc., mentioned she will be capable to minimize the county’s quantity of insurance coverage claim appeals by matching employees’ health-related demands to the plan that very best serves them.

But Commissioner Will Jones, who supports the contract, explained he is uncertain how several claim disputes county employees have filed or how a lot of employees are dissatisfied with their strategies.

“I really do not know the exact amount. . . . The self-insured prepare is relatively new. I’m not genuinely positive percentage-smart if it is an inordinate volume,” he stated.

The county started a self-funded insurance prepare in 2011 with the hope it would conserve money in the extended run. The fund is paid for by each contributions from workers and the county. The insurance fund will spend for the consultant and had $ one,820,914 in it as of Friday.

Scott & White Healthcare is the third-celebration administrator of the county’s insurance strategies.

Jones said he expects the advisor to save money for the insurance coverage fund by connecting personnel with the least pricey doctors for their health care needs and forming wellness programs that hold employees more healthy.

The wellness insurance fund shouldn’t deplete as quickly and sooner or later will enable commissioners to reduced employee premiums, but the quantity of estimated cost savings is unknown, commissioners said.

Jones said the consultant will meet with any employee who requests help in comprehending his or her health insurance prepare and how to use it.

Mayes explained, “The insurance coverage plan utilizes terminology we don’t genuinely recognize totally. (Workers) really don’;t inquire these inquiries in their open enrollment meetings since folks are sort of embarrassed to say, ‘I really do not comprehend what this is.’ They ask a coworker what program they are on, check out that box and they haven’t actually understood the advantage that they have.”

Commissioner Ben Perry said, “If you really don’;t realize what you are currently being offered, you are not going to get the greatest bang for your buck.”

The county previously has 5 human sources personnel, but Human Resources Director Butch Kelly explained his division does not have insurance professionals.

“I consider it will complement what we do. I really do not feel it will get away from what we do,” Kelly explained. “I really do not see it altering what we do, but there’s some expertise there we do not have.”

Kelly said the human resources division largely assists county personnel fill out advantage varieties and funnels paperwork to the proper places.

But commissioners provided minor evidence county staff want a lot more training on their insurance strategies.

District Clerk Karen Matkin mentioned she is open to anything at all the county does to provide far more providers to the employees in her department, but the clerks in her workplace presently have a great understanding of what their programs provide.

“I believe my personnel comprehend really well. We usually give them the chance to attend the meetings. Now occasionally, there are things that go on in the meetings or items that are stated, later on we find out weren’t precise,” Matkin stated.

Matkin mentioned she has appealed an insurance coverage claim after and a couple of her personnel have done the same, but it’s a easy method.

District clerk staff also have participated in the county’s bodyweight-reduction plans, diabetes management courses and other wellness programs.

“We feel like we did fine with the info we had and the selections we had,” she mentioned.

If you go

What: McLennan County Commissioners Court will vote on insurance advisor contract

When: 9 a.m. Tuesday

Where: McLennan County Courthouse Courtroom, 501 Washington Ave.

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