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NC State Employees’ Health Plan: Already the lowest cost of any surrounding state

I’ve been talking about Medicaid and the possibility of budget cuts. Now let me turn to another major health expense for NC that GOPers are already mentioning as a place for cuts – NC’s state employees’ health plan. The plan insures over half a million schoolteachers, snowplow drivers (some of my favorite people at the moment), highway patrol officers and others. Like other workers, health coverage is an important basic benefit for state employees. And costs in the state health plan continue to rise just like health care costs in private health insurance plans. This makes a nice talking point when legislators are looking an easy budget cut but are state health plan costs really out of line with other health plans?

This is a question with an answer. Last year a special study commissioned by the oversight committee of the state health plan was conducted by the private business group Aon Consulting to compare the costs of NC’s state health plan to the costs of the plans in Georgia, Virginia, and Tennessee.

The findings? NC has the lowest – yes, lowest – cost per employee or family member insured of all states studied. Why? Aon Consulting suggested that the health plan was getting better rates from doctors, keeping state employees in local provider networks, and managing health risk better. Bottom line here is pretty simple. NC is already paying the lowest per employee for health coverage of any surrounding state. To cut more from the NC State Health Plan where cost sharing is already extremely high and many other cost saving measures are already clearly in place and working, is really going to hurt our state employees. Like many parts of state government that have seen billions of cuts over the last two years, it’s hard to cut more when cuts have already been deep and sustained.

9 Comments

  1. Follow The Money

    January 4, 2011 at 3:47 pm

    it would be interesting to take a closer look to the flow of our tax dollars to the transnational pharmaceutical companies thru the conduit of the so-called ‘State Health Plan’.

  2. Follow The Money

    January 4, 2011 at 3:49 pm

    are we getting our money’s worth in terms of efficacy?

  3. […] This post was mentioned on Twitter by wendyweightloss. wendyweightloss said: #news, #health NC State Employees' Health Plan: Already the lowest cost of any surrounding state http://dld.bz/EeyA […]

  4. gregflynn

    January 4, 2011 at 8:41 pm

    It would be interesting to take a closer look at the flow of our tax dollars to and from the transnational pharmaceutical companies like PPD thru the conduit of the so-called “Real Jobs NC”.

  5. Follow The Money

    January 5, 2011 at 10:39 am

    good idea Greg….

  6. terry richardson

    January 5, 2011 at 2:35 pm

    I am a 37 yr. veteran teacher. Many years when teachers did NOT receive pay increases (cost of living), the health plan was touted as an “in lieu of” benefit…It is great for me…but to carry my spouse costs $600/month….not so great…Terry

  7. Alex

    January 5, 2011 at 11:02 pm

    Why would you not buy her an individual policy at one fourth of the cost above ?

  8. Peppercorns

    January 6, 2011 at 2:16 pm

    Now that those that set up the plan are gone and going, it is the hopes of every state employee that the plans family costs will go down. If that is not possible, perhaps benefits could increase. State employees have not have even a COLA in the last few years, yet the cost of the STate Employees Health Plan has increased EVERY year. The CEO of BC/BS in North Carolina who administrates the plan, recieved a huge multi million dollar bonus and other higher ups got similar bonus’. Again nothing for state employees except higher deductables and perscription costs. The State Employees Health Care Plan should be rebid, thus allowing the most economical provider to administrate the plan. BC/BS supposedly gets $15 a month for every man, woman, and child reguistered with the plan, if they use the benefits or not. If the plan has 75,000 participants, (I’d say many more), that equals well over $1 million dollars a month. Think about it. BC/BS is making the money. Not the State Employees or the State Heath Plan it self. Blue Cross /Blue Shield of North Carolina is making the money, the same BC/BS that just out sourced it’s customer service sector to India. hmmmmm

  9. […] @dansearingSr: Adam Searing on NC employees’ state health plan: http://j.mp/gplYRs Let’s hear fr other Searings on their […]