Committee recommends health insurance plan changes for ECASD - WQOW TV: Eau Claire, WI NEWS18 News, Weather, and Sports

Committee recommends health insurance plan changes for ECASD

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Eau Claire (WQOW) - The cost of health care was front and center at the Eau Claire School Board meeting Monday night.  A district committee is recommending a new provider.

The district's health insurance committee recommends switching from Group Health to Security Health, which is run by Marshfield Clinic.

The committee says the bid from Group Health was too high. It was a 16-percent hike from last year.  The Security Health bid was less, but still represents an increase of 13 percent.  District employees would have two options under security:  an HMO, which would mean health care provided by Marshfield Clinic, or choosing an open access plan.  That would give employees more flexibility for providers, but would cost them about $100 more a month.

"If a huge portion of us are forced financially to move to that HMO group, you know, we'd be looking at, can Marshfield handle those services to the ability that we would expect from a healthcare provider," asked DeLong Middle School P.E. teacher Janel Seaholm.

"For the most part, depending on what option, because we have the dual option, employees would save money. If they chose the open access, which obviously has the greater benefit because you have more choices of where you're going to receive your services, depending on the employee group that you're in, you have the potential to pay a little bit more for that option," says Kay Marks, the H.R. director for the Eau Claire School District.

Deductibles would be going up under the Security Health plan, but the district is recommending incentives to help bridge the gap in some cases.

Board members said Monday night they want more information about the specifics on the potential plan.

The board will take that information into account when they vote on the plan at their next meeting on April 8th.

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