October 28, 2008
CIGNA Rolls Out New Suite of Health Plans for Individuals and Small Employer Groups
CIGNA HealthCare announced today that it has started offering its award-winning health plan products and services to employers with 50 or fewer employees and to individuals and their families in select states. The plans offer many of the benefits that have traditionally only been available to larger employers such as access to a 24-hour health information line and tools to help individuals understand their own personal health risks to aid in preventing a serious health event. Starting on September 15, the CIGNA individual and family plans, as well as those for small employers were offered in Arizona and Texas. These plans will be offered in Tennessee and made available to individuals in Colorado, with plans to add Florida by the end of 2008. The plans will become available in additional states throughout 2009.
"Individual purchasers of health benefits and people who work for smaller companies have not been able to access the variety of health care coverage options that people who work in larger companies have enjoyed - until now," said Andrew Sullivan, senior vice president of CIGNA HealthCare's individual and small group segment. "CIGNA has taken the industry-leading cost and quality programs it has developed for larger employers and is now making them available to smaller employers and individuals to offer choice and affordability that is unique in the industry."
There are a variety of plans to choose from to help meet the very specific health and financial requirements of both individuals and small group employers. Depending on the plan chosen, individuals and their families may have access to a network of more than 500,000 quality health professionals and facilities throughout the country. All of the plans include health and wellness discounts such as weight management or tobacco cessation programs, fitness club memberships, laser vision correction, acupuncture or chiropractic care, as well as prescriptions by mail through the CIGNA Tel-Drug Home Delivery Pharmacy at no extra cost or delivery fee.
A broad range of benefit levels is available to enable individual and small group customers to find the plan that is right for them. Health Savings Plans, which are low cost, high-deductible health plans used in combination with a tax-advantaged Health Savings Account (HSA) to pay for certain medical expenses, are also available.
CIGNA's industry-leading tools that provide meaningful information to help people make more informed health care decisions are also included to help individuals maximize their health benefits. These tools, which can be customized to provide relevant health-related services and programs offered by CIGNA include:
-- Health Assessment: to help individuals assess current health status, understand their potential health risks and establish goals to improve their health, reduce risks and prevent sickness.
-- CIGNA HealthCare 24-Hour Health Information Line(SM): to provide helpful, reliable health information from a registered nurse toll-free, anytime, anywhere.
-- MyCIGNA.com Personalized Website: to access plan details, get health information and access a number of interactive tools. Through myCIGNA.com, individuals may choose a doctor; refill prescriptions; check prescription costs and learn about treatments and drug risks, or how hospitals are ranked by procedure and cost based on the person's specific benefit plan and get facts on condition-specific procedures and treatments.
-- Explanation of Benefits: CIGNA offers a new and easy-to-understand financial explanation of medical activities, which includes dates of care, changes submitted such as an added procedure, and the amount the individual will have to pay before CIGNA will cover the remaining costs.
"These offerings all come with recognized quality and service," said Sullivan. Readers of Business Insurance Magazine have chosen CIGNA as offering the nation's best health plans in 2008. Now in its fourth year, the Business Insurance Readers Choice Awards recognize the companies that the magazine's subscribers believe offer the best combination of quality, service, value and innovation. CIGNA's call centers have received national recognition for providing an exceptional customer service experience.** And, athenahealth, Inc., one of the largest physician billing and service companies in the United States, has recognized CIGNA HealthCare as an industry leader in claims payment accuracy, promptness, efficiency, and reduction in claim denials. CIGNA ranked #2 overall in 2008 and #1 in 2007 among national health plans. ***
CIGNA HealthCare has a long history and record of success in seeking external validation of its quality improvement programs. CIGNA has earned full accreditation -- the highest rating possible -- from the National Committee for Quality Assurance (NCQA) for its PPO and Open Access Plus plans(1) nationwide. In addition, 22 of CIGNA HealthCare's 23 NCQA-accredited HMO and POS health plans have earned Excellent accreditation status and one plan holds Commendable status. All 23 plans have earned Distinction for NCQA's Quality Plus Member Connections and Physician and Hospital Quality standards. The Member Connections standards assess a plan's Web-based and telephonic consumer decision support tools. The Physician and Hospital Quality standards assess how well a plan provides members with information about physicians and hospitals in its network to help consumers make informed health care decisions.
"Clearly, for small employers and individuals, one size no longer has to fit all," concluded Sullivan.
CIGNA (NYSE:CI), a global health service company, is dedicated to helping people improve their health, well-being and security. CIGNA Corporation's operating subsidiaries provide an integrated suite of medical, dental, behavioral health, pharmacy and vision care benefits, as well as group life, accident and disability insurance, to approximately 47 million people throughout the United States and around the world. To learn more about CIGNA, visit www.cigna.com.
(1) * These plans are offered through Connecticut General Life Insurance Company ** For more information visit http://newsroom.cigna.com/article_display.cfm?article_id=937 *** For more information about the yearly rankings, visit http://www.athenapayerview.com/