Chip Trefry Member Benefits 2017 Inc. 5000 award

Member Benefits Ranks on the Inc. 5000 For Third Consecutive Year

JACKSONVILLE, August 21, 2017Inc. magazine has ranked Member Benefits, NO. 2007 on its 36th annual Inc. 5000, an exclusive ranking of the nation’s fastest-growing private companies. The list represents the most comprehensive look at the most important segment of the economy—America’s independent entrepreneurs.

“I am extremely proud of what we have accomplished, but this is just the beginning. With such a tenacious team and unique business model, I can’t wait to see what the future holds for Member Benefits,” said Chip Trefry Jr., Owner and CEO of Member Benefits.

A mere one in five companies featured on the list have made an appearance three times, and Member Benefits is excited to be one of them. According to Inc., Member Benefits has experienced a three-year growth of 186.87% according to Inc.

You can find the Member Benefits profile at www.inc.com/profile/member-benefits.

About Member Benefits

Member Benefits is a technology-driven insurance brokerage and third-party administrator that focuses on benefit programs and insurance exchanges for member-based organizations. Member Benefits specializes in the design, marketing, and administration of programs for employer groups, associations, affinity groups and franchises. Member Benefits operates in many states with locations in Jacksonville, FL and Austin, TX. For more information, visit www.memberbenefits.com.

 

county map of missouri and kansas

Blue Cross Abandons Affordable Care Act Insurance Exchange in Missouri

UPDATE 6/13/2017: 

St. Louis-based Insurance company, Centene Corp., has announced plans to enter the Missouri, Kansas, and Nevada Affordable Care Act insurance exchanges in 2018. In April of this year, Centene CEO Michael Neidorff was quoted as saying “As to exchanges, we see nothing at this point to prevent us from proceeding with our 2018 marketplace participation.

According to Kansas City Business Journal, “As of March 31st, Centene served about 1.2 million exchange members, up about 500,00 from the previous year.” Centene Corp. is also expected to expand its six current markets in Washington, Indiana, Ohio, Georgia, Florida, and Texas signaling the potential for even more growth in 2018.

In a statement, Neidorff said, “Centene recognizes there is uncertainty of new healthcare legislation, but we are well positioned to continue providing accessible, high quality and culturally sensitive healthcare services to our members” according to an article on Reuters.

 

Citing major and “unsustainable” financial losses, insurance giant Blue Cross Blue Shield have announced plans to abandon individual plans offered through the Affordable Care Act Insurance Exchange for 2018 in both Missouri and Kansas.

According to the press release, “Like many other health insurers across the country, we have been faced with challenges in this market. Through 2016, we have lost more than $100 million. This is unsustainable for our company. We have a responsibility to our members and the greater community to remain stable and secure, and the uncertain direction of this market is a barrier to our continued participation.”

This decision comes on the heels of Aetna’s recent decision to completely pull out of the insurance exchange program after a citing a $450 million loss financial loss in 2016 and an additional projected $200 million loss this year.

While Blue Cross has roughly 1 million members in the affected area, they are estimating that approximately 67,000 will lose coverage. The new decision will not impact members who purchased their plans prior to October 1st, 2013, those who purchased Medicare Advantage, Medicare Supplement, short-term or student health plan from Blue KC, or members who have Blue Cross coverage through their employer.

Nonetheless, the move by Blue Cross comes as a major blow to families and individuals in the area, not to mention the Affordable Care Act itself. Out of the 32 counties the decision impacts, 25 will be left without any options available on the exchange as the situation stands today. Insurance providers have until June 21st to inform the government where or if they will sell plans on the insurance exchanges for 2018.

missouri counties effected by Blue Cross decision to leave ACA exchangeThe State of the ACA Insurance Exchange in Missouri

According to Fox4kc.com “This year, 97 out of Missouri’s 114 counties and the City of St. Louis have only one insurer offering plans on the exchanges. Earlier this year, Humana announced that it is also withdrawing from the exchanges. As things stand today, that leaves 25 counties with no insurer option and 77 counties with only one insurer option next year.

This comes on top of a new report from the Department of Health and Human Services showing that under Obamacare insurance premiums in Missouri’s individual market have increased by an astonishing 145% in just four years.”

Missouri isn’t the only state where insurance providers have been struggling. Healthcare Economist at Washington University in St. Louis, Tim McBride, believes the decision made by Blue Cross Blue Shield of Kansas City “is part of a larger trend with insurers pulling out of marketplaces in Virginia and Iowa as well.”

If you find yourself one of the 67,000 people in the Missouri and Kansas area that this decision impacts—we can help. For over 30 years, we have assisted thousands of employers and individuals secure the coverage they need for themselves and their families. Our benefits counselors are on hand M-F 8:30 am to 5:00 pm and are specially trained in helping attorneys with their insurance needs and may be able to help in the event of a loss of coverage for 2018.

Stay tuned to Member Benefits for more updates, or contact us today at www.memberbenefits.com/contact-us/ to see what options may be available to you.

To view the full press release from Blue Cross Blue Shield visit www.bluekc.com.

Final Market Stabilization Rule

Did you know that approximately 500,000 fewer Americans enrolled in a plan during the open enrollment in 2017 than in 2016? The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services has issued the final market stabilization rule. The goal is to increase choices, lower premiums and encourage stability in health insurance markets for 2018.

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Letter From Member Benefits’ CEO Regarding Health Insurance Delays During Open Enrollment

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Dear Client,

I want to assure you that all of us at Member Benefits completely understand your concern regarding the complications and delays that are occurring in regards to your application for health insurance. I feel privileged that you have chosen Member Benefits to help you with such an important decision to choose and apply for your health coverage.

These are unprecedented times for health insurance carriers. The following will help you understand why all of the carriers are overwhelmed to various degrees:

  • Over 27,000,000 people have newly applied or changed their plans for insurance since 11/01/15.
  • One of our leading carriers informed us that they received more than 10,000 applications on 12/15/15, the deadline date to apply for a 1/1/16 effective date.
  • Several carriers dropped some of their most popular plans for 2016, causing a panic amongst insureds to secure similar coverage with other carriers.
  • Regardless of the reasons, insurance companies underwriting, billing, and issuance systems are overwhelmed with the volume and are not able to deliver approvals, policy documents, and identification cards in a reasonable manner.
  • One carrier is predicting that policies may take as long as March to be issued with a 1/1/16 effective date.
  • Some carriers are asking us to inform insureds that they might need to pay their claims “out of pocket” and request reimbursement once the policy is issued.
  • Although the carriers greatly increased their staff to handle the volume, some carriers stated that they were expecting a 40% increase in customer service needs and actually received an increase of up to 500%.

It is important to me that you know our staff is working tirelessly and is in constant contact with the carriers to expedite the processing of our clients’ applications.

Again, we are all empathetic with your very justifiable concerns. In addition, we are certain that we will be able to satisfy your needs and ultimately deliver to you the product you applied for.

Earl C. “Chip” Trefry, Jr. CLU
President/CEO

 

Member Benefits to run Private Health Insurance Exchange for FHBA

Member Benefits Selected to Launch Private Health Insurance Exchange for Florida Home Builders Association

Jacksonville, Florida (PRWEB) October 31, 2014

Member Benefits, a national leader in private health exchange and benefits provider for associations programs, announced that it has been selected as the exclusive, endorsed provider of a private health insurance exchange for members of the Florida Home Builders Association (FHBA). The offering is a unique online marketplace that offers customized benefit plans for individual FHBA members and employer group members of all sizes. With a full line of health insurance plans and other benefits, the exchange also provides an integrated and efficient shopping experience that utilizes decision support technology to help members choose the plans that best suits their needs.

Member Benefits will work in strategic partnership with FHB Insurance, the wholly owned subsidiary of the FHBA, to compliment the current member insurance programs to better meet the insurance needs of Florida’s construction industry.

“As a well-known leader in association insurance programs, Member Benefits was selected because of its proven track record of success with associations and superior service model for health insurance programs. What we are offering through Member Benefits is a truly world-class program and one that is worthy of the FHBA members,” said Jerry Linder, FHBA President. “We are confident that the new private health exchange will be of significant value to our members and their employees.”

“This new endorsement reinforces that Member Benefits is a clear market leader for insurance benefits programs and private exchange solutions for associations. Our technology has been very well received by our existing association clients and we are excited about the new opportunity to work with FHBA members,” said Nicklaus Trefry, Chief Operating Officer, Member Benefits.

About the Florida Home Builders Association
Established in 1949, the Florida Home Builders Association (FHBA) represents the interests of Florida’s home building, remodeling and commercial construction industry. The FHBA is one of the most dynamic trade organizations of its kind in America. FHBA’s 7500 corporate members and their 350,000+ employees contribute to making construction Florida’s second largest economic engine. At its core, FHBA is about advocacy and its legislative, legal and political initiatives have worked together to create the best possible economic and regulatory environment for its members to succeed.

About Member Benefits
Member Benefits is a full-service insurance third party administrator and private exchange technology provider specializing in the design, marketing, and administration of professional affinity group and association member benefit programs. For more information, visit the Member Benefits Web site at http://www.memberbenefits.com/fhba

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