EAT0N — On Monday, Sept. 14, Preble County Commissioners met with representatives from CEBCO to discuss the county’s insurance plan. County employees face a 4.5 percent increase in insurance costs.
On Friday, Sept 18. the board of commissioners met with the heads of several departments within the county, including Sheriff Mike Simpson, County Prosecutor Martin Votel, Judge David Abruzzo and Judge Jennifer Overmeyer, to discuss which of the two options presented Monday provided the best option for the employees of the county.
They were choosing between two plans presented by CEBCO, and Votel was the first to tell commissioners he believed keeping the current plan was the best option. “The way I look at it, if you have a catastrophic illness those changes in the out of pocket cap and the 50-50, 75-25 aren’t going to mean much to you,” said Votel.
He continued, “But most people encounter a situation where they go for an MRI or a CAT Scan and are spending a couple thousand dollars and that is where the rubber will meet the road when they pay 50-50 coinsurance.”
He ended by saying he felt the 4.5 percent increase would be cheaper in the longer run for employees.
Votel and the other county departments elected unanimously to keep the current plan with a 4.5 percent increase in cost.
Earlier this summer, CEBCO projected a renewal increase of just .3 percent but representatives from CEBCO said an “uptick” in claims both from the county and for the company as a whole had caused a 4.5 percent increase for the current insurance plan.
The 4.5 percent increase is about half of the 8.5 percent average renewal cost for CEBCO as a whole, according to representatives, with renewal increases ranging from 0 percent to 13 percent throughout the company.
County employees’ current deductible is $1,000 for an individual or $2,000 for a family with a co-insurance of 75-25. This means the plan would pay for 75 percent of medical costs compared to just 25 percent for the employee.
The current maximum out-of-pocket expense for an employee is $3,750 and $7,500 for a family.
CEBCO presented two options to the board, the first being keeping the current plan with an increase of 4.5 percent to county employees.
A second plan featured a 50-50 coinsurance plan with a $1,100 deductible for an individual and a $2,200 deductible for a family and an increase of .4 percent of cost to the employees. The plan would have a maximum out of pocket expense capped at $4,500 for an individual and $9,000 for a family.
According to CEBCO, serious claims reaching the maximum out of pocket expenses would not be impacted by switching to the 50-50 plan as much as “your average” claims like basic doctor visits would be.
The Preble County Commissioners meet every Monday and Wednesday at 9 a.m. at the Preble County Courthouse. Meetings are open to the public.