iSelect Custom Benefits Store Becomes Michigan’s First Multi-carrier Benefits Exchange for Employers
Employers can control benefit costs and choose amongst carriers while employees can select and customize their benefits.
ROYAL OAK, Mich., March 18, 2013 /PRNewswire/ — iSelect today announced the launch of the iSelect Custom Benefits Store, Michigan’s first multi-carrier and multi-distributor benefits exchange for mid-sized and small employers. iSelect Custom Benefits Store is a fully insured health benefits exchange – a storefront for group benefits – that enables employers to control benefit costs with a defined contribution funding strategy while enabling employees to become active and informed benefits consumers. Employees select the specific benefits they need – from health care, including medical, dental and vision, to disability and life insurance.
“iSelect levels the benefits playing field for mid-sized employers,” said Denise Christy, iSelect founder and CEO. “iSelect gives employers access – through their independent insurance agents – to multiple carriers and a menu of benefit options not available previously in the small and mid-sized employer market.”
iSelect’s carrier partners are two premier Michigan health plans, Health Alliance Plan (HAP) and Priority Health.
“Priority Health and HAP will offer custom product suites on iSelect,” said Christy. “Through their commitment and partnership, we will be able to deliver outstanding health plan options. HAP and Priority Health both offer broad provider networks and have high member satisfaction.”
iSelect meets an important need for Michigan employers preparing to comply with the Affordable Care Act (ACA), according to Christy.
“Research shows that 85% of Michigan employers intend to continue offering health coverage when the ACA is fully enacted in 2014. The ACA mandates that employers provide health benefits or opt out and pay a penalty. iSelect is a great solution for employers that want to provide coverage while protecting their bottom lines,” adds Christy.
“Three aspects of iSelect set it apart. First, iSelect offers customers an array of carriers from which to select their carrier of choice; other private exchanges typically are proprietary and only include one carrier for all customers. Second, iSelect uses a consumer-friendly technology platform from the market-leading private exchange provider, Liazon. Liazon’s Bright Choices(®) Exchange helps employees choose and navigate their benefits. Third, iSelect’s customized benefit options are brought to the employer through the independent insurance agent that they have come to know and trust,” explains Christy.
Independent agents interested in marketing and selling benefits using the iSelect Custom Benefits Store will be certified to do so through certification seminars iSelect is conducting in April.
The first fully insured multi-carrier exchange in Michigan, iSelect
- Controls employers’ benefit costs while giving employees control of their benefit choices. Employers make a defined contribution; employees decide how/where they will “spend” their benefit dollars
- Supports the independent agent and the relationship with his/her clients, providing state of the art technology, carrier options and, income to the agent
- Provides a choice of at least two carrier options for each product line offered on the exchange. Employers choose a carrier for each product that best meets their employees’ service area needs
- Gives employees the opportunity to choose their benefits. iSelect carriers have packaged a range of five to ten medical plan designs compared to small and mid-sized plans that today are limited to two or three plan choices
- Simplifies benefits administration. Eliminates financial risk. Employers make a single defined monthly payment. The insurance carriers fully insure their benefit plans.
“iSelect is a win-win for Michigan consumers and companies. The state’s most trusted health insurers have joined a Michigan-based private exchange to provide cost savings and a greater choice of flexible health plan options than ever before for employees,” said Mark Hall, HAP vice president of Sales. “HAP’s expertise in the retail market and established insurance agent relationships will help purchasers make the right choices in this growing market.”
“As healthcare changes significantly in the next year, Priority Health remains committed to finding new and improved ways to address issues of cost, access and quality,” said Scott Norman, vice president of Sales for Priority Health. “We see our partnership with iSelect as one more way we are furthering this commitment and achieving our mission of providing all people access to excellent and affordable healthcare.”
Liazon is iSelect Custom Benefits Store’s exclusive private exchange partner. iSelect Custom Benefits Store has enrollment and decision-making tools for agents, employers and employees. Employees, when enrolled, select and track their benefits costs and utilization, and have access to health and wellness information and tools.
“Priority Health and HAP engage consumers in their health with their physicians,” said Christy. “At iSelect, we believe that by driving higher levels of engagement through consumer choice, we will make Michigan a healthier place to call home.”