Tuesday, June 26, 2012
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Board discusses future health insurance options for county employees

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[June 26, 2012]  While considering health insurance options for county employees this spring, the insurance committee invited input from county employees through the insurance advisory committee.

The county has had R.W. Garrett Agency act as a broker on their behalf to look for the best insurance options.

In recent years many insurance companies have either consolidated or gone out of the health insurance business. There are now few companies to choose from, which eliminates some of the shopping for what company to choose.

This year employees were asked their preference among several programs that provided various coverage choices and high deductibles, in the best of which they would need to kick in $50 per month on the individual plan. As the process was coming to a close, a couple of employees brought up other companies and programs they knew about that had not been considered. The committee agreed that in the future it would look further at what might be available.

Schumacher said the committee is following through on the promise to look at other options. Through CIRMA, an Illinois government agency, she and administrative assistant Pam Meagher made arrangements and met with representatives of Gallagher insurance to review Logan County’s needs.

The website of the Illinois Association of County Board Members provides the following description of CIRMA:


The Counties of Illinois Risk Management Agency (CIRMA) is a protected self-insurance risk management program that is county owned and county managed. CIRMA is dedicated to serving Illinois counties and the people they serve by providing long-term stability in insurance coverage while controlling these costs.

Arthur J. Gallagher Risk Management Services, Inc. has been selected as the Program Manager through a careful process by IACBMC.


The committee had previously been in contact with CIRMA when they were first forming a new pool of county employees for health insurance. It was determined then to wait and see how that was working out.

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A new one-year review of claims was received this month. At this time, because of the high claims that Logan County has had, it is not certain if Logan County would be considered for the program.

Schumacher was told that it would take 12 to 18 months to establish a local pool. Gallagher could act as the broker and consultant for Logan County prior to the establishment of the pool.

"In the course of the conversation, they talked about ways to manage and cut (health care) costs," Schumacher said. One suggestion was to contact the health department and see what services they might provide, such as screenings and blood draws on county employees. It was noted that they’re "very aggressive in cost-containment and managing care."

The committee determined to look at this more closely and included communicating their considerations with the R.W. Garrett Agency in the process.


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