UC's 2007 Medical Plan Bid Process

Working to Preserve Quality Health Benefits while Managing Rising Costs

Healthcare costs nationwide continue to rise and employers everywhere, including UC, face significant challenges in maintaining affordable access to quality healthcare for employees. As a result, many public- and private-sector employers have had to cut benefits and significantly raise employee costs in order to address skyrocketing health-insurance price increases.

Through careful management, UC has been able to avoid reductions in benefits. UC has also taken steps to help employees manage premium increases by continuing its salary-based approach to monthly premiums. This means workers who are earning less pay lower monthly premiums and continue to have access to quality health insurance for themselves and their families.

Throughout 2007, UC will be exploring a variety of options to help the University preserve quality health benefits for employees, while managing rising costs including:

  • Consolidating the number of general medical plan providers, while still maintaining the benefits options available to employees. UC is committed to offering employees a choice of medical plans that meet their needs and those of their families. UC will be exploring the possibility of accomplishing this goal with a more select group of providers in order to better manage costs for both employees and the University.
  • Using specialty providers for specific benefits. One of the options UC will be exploring is the possibility of using specialty providers for certain types of benefits and services, such as pharmacy benefits and behavioral health care. One of the main potential advantages of using specialty providers is that they may offer the same, if not better, products and services to employees at more favorable prices and with greater administrative ease.
  • A continued focus on employee well-being. In addition to continuing its salary-based approach to monthly premiums, which means workers earning less pay lower monthly premiums for access to quality health insurance for themselves and their families, in 2007 UC is launching a new "Wellness Pilot Program." This program will provide resources to employees to help them become more informed about, and involved in, managing their own health.

The goal of exploring different options is to see if UC can better utilize its purchasing power as a "big consumer" to get better pricing, while maintaining—if not improving—healthcare products and services for employees.

Throughout this process, UC will be guided by its core principles regarding employee health benefits: maintaining access, quality, sustainability and choice.

Starting in February, UC will be discussing these ideas with existing providers and potential new specialty providers. UC will also continue to meet with various internal stakeholders on these issues, including faculty, HR offices, The Regents and unions. Employees will continue to be informed of the University's progress in this area.

 

 

Campus Human Resources, Benefits Services
Phone: (310) 794-0830 | Fax: (310) 794-0835