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Union County health insurance costs reduced for second year in a row

The cost of health insurance for Union County’s more than 100 employees will go down again during the coming year. Total health insurance premiums will be $73,547.04 lower during the coming year than they were for the past 12 months.

The county’s health insurance for the coming year was written by Affordable Employee Benefits insurance agency of Ecru, MS and the John Stroud Agency of New Albany.

Health insurance coverage for county employees for the coming year will again be provided by Blue Cross/Blue Shield with Gulf Guaranty Insurance Company of Jackson again providing the secondary or “gap” coverage.

According to information provided by the office of the Union County Board of Supervisors, the total employee health premiums for the year beginning April 1, 2018, will be $742,440.

This is the second year in which the total cost of health insurance for the county’s employees has declined.

Last year, for what is believed to have been the first time in 15 years, the Union County Board of Supervisors invited local insurance agencies to submit competitive quotations for county health insurance coverage. Mississippi law does not require that local governments take competitive bids for employee health insurance coverage.

For about fifteen years health insurance coverage for county employees had been sold to Union County by the Morgan-White Agency of Jackson and Oxford. Last year the board of supervisors received quotations from both Morgan-White and the Affordable Employee Benefits/John Stroud combination.

Morgan-White’s original total quotation last year was for total premiums of $1.12-million. The quotation from the Affordable Employee Benefits/John Stroud combination last was for more than a quarter-million dollars less than the Morgan-White bid.
Andrew Nowlin of Affordable Employee Benefits agency said Blue Cross/Blue Shield initially offered a substantial rate reduction for the coming year, but, he said, “We negotiated it down to more than twice the rate reduction Blue Cross/Blue Shield originally offered.” The Affordable Employee Benefits agency specializes in employee health insurance and other employment group benefits. Nowlin said his agency had recently been able to provide substantial health insurance benefits savings for Montgomery County, Panola County, the Town of Blue Mountain and the City of Pontotoc.

The Union County Board of Supervisors said other agencies were invited to quote on the health insurance coverage for the year beginning April 1, 2018, but none did.

More on last year’s opening of the bidding process:


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