Newspaper article Evansville Courier & Press (2007-Current)

Teachers May Get Early Plan Access ; Memo OK'd by Board Making Grade

Newspaper article Evansville Courier & Press (2007-Current)

Teachers May Get Early Plan Access ; Memo OK'd by Board Making Grade

Article excerpt

Evansville Vanderburgh School Corp. employees eligible to participate in the school district's health insurance program may be able to choose from options offered under the district's new Health Insurance Marketplace plan six months earlier than originally scheduled. That is, if the Evansville Teachers Association next week ratifies a memorandum of understanding approved Monday night by the EVSC School Board. If the teachers approve the document, the new health insurance options will be offered starting July 1 instead of Jan. 1.

The School Board on March 17 approved coverage with Anthem Insurance that was to serve as an eight-month bridge plan for eligible employees beginning May 1 to transition them into a Health Insurance Marketplace available in 2015. The marketplace will eliminate the one-size-fits-all approach the district currently has for insurance plans and will provide a variety of health care options for employees to determine which options best meet their health care needs.

The plan, approved on March 17, will still go into effect on May 1, but the marketplace options would become effective July 1, provided the teachers union approves the memorandum. An informational meeting is scheduled 3:30 p.m. Wednesday at Harrison High School, and a meeting for retirees and second-shift employees will be scheduled at a later date.

"While no one wanted to make such a significant change in coverage, this action was undertaken after two years of intense study.... And, you've heard me state numerous times that our health insurance costs, like those across the nation, continue to escalate," EVSC Superintendent David Smith said at Monday night's meeting.

The marketplace plan has six Anthem options with various levels of deductibles, out-of-pocket expenses, coinsurance and pharmaceutical copay.

The goal of the new health care plan, EVSC officials said, is to provide options for employees that could include lower deductibles and out-of-pocket expenses for those who have large health care needs, higher deductibles and out-of-pocket payments for those with lower health care costs, a Health Savings Account plan and two EVSC Health and Wellness Centers. …

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