Health Care for Less With the Care You Need
Kern County government will spend approximately $145 million this fiscal year on employee health and dental insurance plans. As the cost of health care continues to rise, staff from the Human Resource Division knew that business as usual was no longer an adequate approach to administering our health care plans. Although a high level of care was provided through each plan, there were challenges to providing the necessary oversight and control over network costs. Network costs for different plans were inconsistent and lacked any standardization, and this defined the problem for Human Resources to tackle.
To fix this problem, Kern County Human Resources changed the process of delivering health care products to a single, standardized “Kern Legacy” product line that provides four options. This new process allows for greater control and standardization of network costs. It also greatly improved economies of scale through the integration of administrative services.
WHY IS IT IMPORTANT?
This project is a key improvement to closing Kern County’s fiscal deficit. It also reflects Kern County’s strategic initiatives by rethinking, reformulating, re-engineering and delivering smart change to strengthen our long-term fiscal outlook. By providing a model of excellence, Human Resources will enhance employee wellness and health outcomes by delivering better healthcare at lower costs.
A conservative estimate of nearly a 7% reduction for the cost of employee health care plans equates to $10 million savings. It is expected that savings will continue year over year under this newly improved standardization process that also improves and personalizes the customer (employee) experience with their health plans.