Hendry board approves insurance carrier switch

CLEWISTON — The Hendry County Board of Commissioners approved changing the insurance carrier for employee insurance benefits on Tuesday, Aug. 13.

The board decided to go with Public Risk Management (PRM) rather than United Healthcare, which had advised it was going to raise rates 16% over the current ones. The increase over current rates will be just a hair over 5% with the change of companies. Florida Blue also submitted a proposal.

PRM submitted separate proposals as well for dental, vision, basic life, accidental death & disability and voluntary life insurance coverages. The county’s committee of officials convened to evaluate the bids ranked PRM as its No. 1 choice for all lines of coverage. Commissioner Darrell Harris moved that the board accept the bid, and Commissioner Emma Harris seconded.

After County Administrator Jennifer Davis added her thoughts for the record about the deductible reset that would occur with the new contract, saying she was not sure “if that is going to be able to happen 100%” and thus not cost employees any additional money, a representative from the county’s insurance broker, Albritton Insurance, stepped to the podium to explain that they believed it would not cause a problem.

Derren Bryan, chief operating officer of the company, said his company would help PRM get an electronic file from United Healthcare that will tell PRM “what every employee’s accumulators, deductibles and out-of-pocket maximums, have accumulated to at that point” when the change becomes effective, and they acknowledged that it could happen “so that employees won’t have to have two resets in the same year.”

He added, “There shouldn’t be a major impact when it comes to deductibles and out-of-pocket maximums for the move.”

The commissioners approved the change 5-0.

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